Wake County Libraries and Solid Waste launch recycling education campaign

Classes and drop-in events offered throughout March

If you’ve ever wondered, “Can I recycle or compost this?”, you’re not alone. To help the community learn more about green initiatives, the Wake County Solid Waste Management Division is hosting a series of free educational events at Wake County libraries throughout March.

“If we all do a little more to reduce the amount of waste going into our landfill, we can make a big difference in the environmental health of our county,” said Wake County Commissioner Matt Calabria. “By offering these classes, we’re making it easy for residents to learn what they can toss into their recycling or compost bins instead of the trash.”

In addition to reducing waste, these educational opportunities will also help residents avoid recycling materials the municipalities and county do not accept in local recycling programs. Improper recycling is considered contamination, and it can be costly for the county and dangerous for recycling facility staff. The county is required to pay a fee to its recycling processor if the contamination rate exceeds 10%. The current rate in Wake County is 13.8%.

illustration of recycling truck, worker, recycling bin, plant, birds flying in clouds

Next month, residents can attend drop-in events to ask experts what they can and cannot recycle in Wake County. Beginning this weekend, they can also join classes to learn how to do indoor vermicomposting, which uses earthworms to turn organic matter into fertilizer, and backyard composting, a simple method for decomposing organic matter at home.

The classes are suggested for ages 11 and older, and people of all ages are encouraged to attend the drop-in recycling events.

Events will take place at the following times and locations:

  • Vermicomposting class at East Regional Library in Knightdale on Saturday, March 2, from 2:30–4 p.m. Contact Susan Lovett at susan.lovett@wake.gov with questions.
  • Vermicomposting class at Northeast Regional Library in Raleigh on Thursday, March 7, from 11 a.m.–12:30 p.m. Contact Cristopher Estes at cristopher.estes@wake.gov with questions.
  • Can I Recycle This? Drop-in event at Oberlin Regional Library in Raleigh on Tuesday, March 12, from 3–5 p.m. Contact Daniel Sumerlin at daniel.sumerlin@wake.gov with questions.
  • Backyard composting class at West Regional Library in Cary on Thursday, March 14, from 11 a.m.–noon Contact Dayna Shields at dayna.shields@wake.gov with questions.
  • Can I Recycle This? Drop-in event at West Regional Library in Cary on Monday, March 18, from 2–4 p.m. Contact Dayna Shields at dayna.shields@wake.gov with questions.
  • Backyard composting class at Eva Perry Regional Library in Apex on Thursday, March 21, from 3:30–4:30 p.m. Contact Mary Ajiboye at mary.ajiboye@wake.gov with questions.

Learning how to properly recycle and compost through these events and using resources such as the county’s Recycling 101 page can help mitigate contamination and reduce waste at our county’s facilities.

Press Release