Reduce – Reuse – Recycle

Waste hierarchy models are changing to reflect a primary imperative to reduce our patterns of consumption and then, lastly, to recycle what we can.

The inverted pyramid model starts with a call to REDUCE our consumption in everything we do, whether energy use or purchasing goods. Drawdown* rates reducing food waste as the #3 solution out of 100 Solutions to Reverse Global Warming.

Nowadays, you can be mindful as well as fashionable about REUSE by shopping for vintage clothes and scoring thrift shop finds. You can support green and sustainable industries by using products made from recycled goods – such as outdoor Trex decking made from 95% recyclables.

At the bottom of the pyramid is the last option, which is to RECYCLE. Recycling rules are changing. Use the recent restrictions on plastic packaging as a chance to develop new shopping practices – such as buying more in the bulk  foods section.


Lend Me A Plate – A volunteer project by SOMRA (Southern Oregon Master Recyclers in Action) Lend Me A Plate (LMAP) provides an alternative to the use of paper, plastic, and styrofoam products at events such as weddings, reunions, meetings, parties, or memorials, whether in a public or private setting. LMAP’s service is free of charge to Ashland and Talent residents.



APRIL 2019

Where to Recyle in Medford and Ashland, Oregon by Laura Whitney (Master Climate Protector, 2019)

MARCH 2018

Lowes and Home Depot both have battery recycling drop off boxes at their front door (I believe Lowes has it at customer service desk right now), however, Lowe’s only takes rechargeable batteries at the moment. I talked with my store manager, and she said she’s on the list for when Lowe’s rolls out recycling for ALL batteries, but that may not be until next year–has to do with the cost of transporting to a recycling center, and the cost-benefit of providing that service to customers. But the Medford store is #7 for sales company-wide, so it is almost always one of the first to get new programs. Our store does have free drop off recycling for CFL bulbs, but not tubes.  My manager didn’t know why, and will add the question to her meeting with the regional manager later this week. She’s willing to look into it further, but would need corporate approval for any changes, but feels the corporate culture would readily support that change.
Home Depot in Phoenix (and Grants Pass) have free drop off recycling for all batteries–we think. My husband checked last night, and there was only the rechargeable box out, but his store manager says there are usually two: rechargeable and regular. They also have free recycling for CFL bulbs, but not the tubes–their reasoning was guest safety, stating that they break too easily to be drop off recycled, but were willing to hear more if there’s a good alternative (a training for staff to safely handle them and store them?)


Rogue Disposal and Recycling Information (

Because of the recent resistance of China to accept our mingled recycling because too many of us contaminate it, co-mingled recycling is likely to end up in  the landfill. The regional rules have changed and we need to start separating our items as follows:

Curbside Recycling

  • Corrugated Cardboard the kind with the wavy center
  •  Milk Jug Style Containers clear or white, rinsed out, no lids
  •  Newspaper and Inserts no magazines
  •  Tin and Aluminum Cans rinsed out, no lids

Clean glass bottles and jars can be dropped off at:

  • Ray’s Food Place, 735 N. Main Street in Phoenix
  • Ray’s Food Place, 401 5th Street in Jacksonville
  • Ray’s Food Place, 126 E. Pine Street in Central Point
  • Sherm’s Thunderbird, 2347 W. Main Street in West Medford
  • Sherm’s Food 4 Less, 2230 Biddle Road in East Medford
  • Rogue Transfer & Recycling, 8001 Table Rock Road in White City

Cardboard, Newspaper, Plastic milk jugs, Tin & Aluminum cans, Glass bottles & jars, High Grade Paper (Office paper & mail. No catalogs or magazines) can be dropped off at:

  • Rogue Transfer & Recycling in White City, 8001 Table Rock Road, White City


Ashland/Talent Recology program:

Eagle Point Southern Oregon Sanitation: