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Is It Recycling Or Is It Junk? A New Web Tool Lets You Learn For Yourself

Brian Bull

Lane County has released a new online tool called the Garbage Guru. The search engine is designed to help residents understand if items are truly recyclable, therefore reducing the “wishful recycling” that has led to China restricting what materials it takes from the Pacific Northwest.

A screen capture of the Garbage Guru shows an inquiry about food scraps.

“The recycling situation is pretty difficult here on the West Coast and we need people to really make sure that they’re recycling only what is determined to be recyclable and if in doubt, find out, or leave it out," says Sarah Grimm, Lane County's Waste Reduction Specialist. "So Lane County set up this 'Garbage Guru' so people can find out.”

The Garbage Guru allows users to search an online database that will recommend where the item should be disposed of, be it curbside garbage, curbside recycling or another location.

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