Almost half of the region’s garbage is generated by businesses, and most of that could still be recycled!For example, 25 percent of the garbage that businesses throw away – more than 120,000 tons annually – is paper that is fully recycleable.If you see businesses throwing away paper, cardboard, or any other recyclable items direct them to RecycleAtWork.com , where they can get free assistance for recycling.
Most offices and residential service now utilize a ‘comingled system’ of recycling.This means that paper, metal cans, plastic bottles and tubs can all be mixed in one container, and glass goes into a separate container.
Many other items, such as paint, scrap metal, and clean plastics are very recycleable.For more information contact the Metro Recycling Hotline (503)234-3000.
For Residential Houses:
Paper (newspaper, junk mail, scrap paper, phonebooks), plastic bottles and tubs (6 ounces and larger), and scrap metal (cans, coat hangers, screws) can all be recycled, and within Gresham City limits the can be mixed together in the big blue rollcart.
Glass bottles and jars go in a separate container.
Not all plastics can be recycled at the curb.Currently only tubs – such as yogurt, margarine, cottage cheese and salsa containers – and plastic bottles are accepted.
For garbage areas:
It is important to protect our streams and rivers by keeping garbage inside of garbage cans.If you come across a dirty garbage area, either clean it up, or explain to the owners that have a clean garbage area is important.
Sidewalks and driveways:
Sweeping sidewalks and driveways instead of cleaning them with the hose not only reduces water use, but protects our streams and rivers.This is because oils and other debris from cars and emissions build up on our roads and sidewalks.If water carries this down the storm drain, it negatively effects our streams.
vNever dump used motor oil, paint or household chemicals on the ground or in a storm drain.
vDon't pour household chemicals down the sink or flush them down the toilet.
vUse non-toxic alternatives to home cleaning chemicals.
vDon't buy more of a household cleaner or other chemical than you need for the job.
vRead and follow directions on the use of household chemicals and disposal of containers.
vSweep driveways and patios clean instead hosing them down.
vCheck for leaky faucets and turn off the water when brushing teeth to conserve water.
vPre-cycle. Buy products with less packaging.
vPick up pet waste and put it in the garbage can or flush it down the toilet.
In Your Yard
vPreserve established trees in your yard and neighborhood.
vDon't overuse fertilizers and pesticides.
vPlant trees, shrubs and ground covers that filter pollutants and reduce stormwater runoff.
vDon't cut your grass too short. Adjust your lawnmower to the proper height to reduce runoff from lawns.
vPlant native vegetation and choose plants that require little or no fertilizer.
vWhen you water your plants and lawn, make sure water doesn't wash over streets and sidewalks.
vRecycle yard debris, or use it to make compost, instead of raking it into streets where it can wash into storm sewers.
Amazingly, a faucet which drips only once every five seconds can waste up to 100 gallons a month. That’s enough water for 8 five-minute showers (using a low flow shower head)!
Use a drip calculator to determine how much water that dripping faucet is wasting.
Checking for Leaks If you think you have a leak, there is a simple test which you can perform by following these steps:
1.Turn off all water consuming appliances and faucets.
3.Look at the red meter dial in the shape of a small triangle.
4.A moving dial probably means you have a leak.
Perform this test at least one more time during the day to double check.
Locating a Leak If you have a leak, your toilet may be the culprit. To find out, drop some dark food coloring dye into the tank of the toilet and wait 10 minutes. If color appears in the bowl, you have a leak.
Check all faucets. Leaky faucets, both indoor and outdoor, are also leak culprits. Change the washers in these faucets.
If you still cannot locate your leak, check for moist spots around and under your home’s plumbing and around indoor plumbing.
Wastewater Best Management Practices
"Dry wipe" pots, pans, and dishware prior to dishwashing.
The grease and food that remains in pots, pans, and dishware will likely go to the landfill. By "dry wiping" and disposing in garbage receptacles, the material will not be sent to the grease traps and interceptors.
This will reduce the amount of material going to grease traps and interceptors, which will require less frequent cleaning, reducing maintenance costs.
Dispose of food waste by recycling and/or in the garbage, not down the garbage disposal
Some recyclers will take food waste for animal feed. In the absence of such recyclers, the food waste can be disposed as solid waste in landfills by solid waste haulers.
Recycling of food wastes will reduce the cost of solid waste disposal.
Solid waste disposal of food waste will reduce the frequency and cost of grease trap and interceptor cleaning.
Recycle Your Fluorescent Tube Lights
Please do not throw your business’s used fluorescent tubes into the garbage–they contain mercury and can be hazardous to employees and the public if broken. The GREAT Businesses program will provide
free boxes to your business to collect and recycle your tubes safely. The City of Gresham will then collect them, free of charge, at the Earth Day Celebration on Saturday, April 21, at Gresham
City Hall. Call Angie Marzano at 503-618-2694 to request boxes for your 4’ and 8’ tubes.
Earth Day Celebration
The City of Gresham Department of Environmental Services will hold its annual Earth Day Celebration for the public from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 21, on the Gresham City Hall plaza.
Activities will take place on the plaza, while a free recycling collection for fluorescent tubes will be in the back parking lot. Gresham businesses with an environmentally-friendly product or mission may
register to have a booth at the event. Call Bonnie Hoffower for an application at 503-618-2526.
How to Get Rid of Your Hazardous Waste
If your business uses products that are corrosive, ignitable, reactive or toxic, then you need to carefully plan your waste disposal program. They may pose a safety issue to your employees, your garbage
hauler and landfill employees if not handled correctly. Many businesses producing small quantities of these items are considered “conditionally exempt generators” (CEGs) and can utilize a disposal
program sponsored by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. To determine how your business should correctly dispose of or recycle your hazardous wastes, please contact the Metro Recycle
Center at 503-234-3000 or check the Metro website at