Posted by: opala808 | January 31, 2020

Book a Recycling Performance for your School!

The City’s Recycling Branch continues its partnership with Honolulu Theatre for Youth to bring back recycling shows for schools. Opala Remix is a 60 minute play with new and improved songs and skits. HTY’s performance is filled with laughter and games, entertaining students while educating them about the City’s solid waste management programs. There is no cost so reserve early. Limited shows are available. Booking dates are from February 18 to March 13, 2020. To schedule or for more information, contact the Honolulu Theatre for Youth’s Managing Director at 839-9885 x 703 or email


Posted by: opala808 | January 31, 2020

Sort Old Phone Books to Generate Electricity

Phone books should be bagged and disposed of in the gray cart or with your regular trash collection. Better yet, if phone books are of no use to you, you can opt out altogether with the help of some websites. Phone books belong in the trash and not your blue bin because the binding and low-grade, low-value paper limits their ability to be recycled. They even get caught in screens and belts at the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) where blue bin material is sorted causing operation shut-downs and delays in the process. The phonebooks serve the City best mixed with regular refuse which is processed at H-POWER to produce energy for O`ahu. In fact, one phonebook from every residence and business would generate enough electricity to power 600 homes for a whole month!


Recycling and waste-to-energy work hand-in-hand to meet O`ahu’s solid waste management goals: to minimize waste going to the landfill while using our `ōpala as a resource. The City targets higher value material for recycling overseas while sending lower grade material to H-POWER for energy production. For more information about proper phonebook disposal, view this infographic created in collaboration with Hawaiian Telcom.


Posted by: opala808 | November 26, 2019

Reduce Thanksgiving Food Waste

On O’ahu, 15% of residential rubbish is wasted food. This equates to about 46,000 tons of food thrown out by households! Consider taking a few simple steps to stop feeding the garbage. You’ll reduce your environmental footprint and save money!

Oahu residents fact

Check out our Food Waste Prevention Page for useful links, food waste facts and helpful mobile apps. Also on this webpage is the electronic version of our booklet “Food: Too Good To Waste“. This comprehensive booklet is tailored to O’ahu residents, and includes storage and preparation tips, recipes to re-vamp leftovers (including recipes by local chefs), donation options, organizational tools, and a printable shopping planner.


About 204 million pounds of turkey meat gets tossed this time of year. Try out this Thanksgiving Dinner Portion Planner to decrease your chances of ending up with excessive leftovers.

There are some food wastes that we just can’t eat. For inedible food scraps like egg shells or citrus peels, composting is a great option that reduces the volume of our waste stream and puts nutrients back into the soil. For a UH flyer on backyard composting, click here.


Learn the basics of backyard composting using resources from your yard and leftover food from your table! The City Department of Environmental Services has partnered with the Board of Water Supply and Friends of Halawa Xeriscape Garden for this beginner’s composting workshop.  Participants will learn tips on how to set up their own backyard composting system and utilize the finished compost.  Composting decreases the overall volume of our waste stream; much of which is yard and food waste.  Compost also enriches soil without the use of chemical fertilizers, reduces plant disease and pests, and retains moisture in your soil for a healthy lawn or garden.  Why throw away yard and food waste when you can learn to compost?  Registration required: call 748-5315 or email  Registration closes 2pm September 20, or when all spaces are filled.  Click here for details.Compost Pictures 002

While the school environment does require certain amounts of folder paper, notebooks and pencils, it’s important to look at how we can reduce waste in all aspects of our lives.  The EPA provides resources to help educators and students learn about waste reduction as well helpful tips that families can follow right now to reduce their impact on the environment.  Younger students should check out the interactive games that introduce key ideas to reduce waste.  Older students can get ideas for science and service-learning projects.  Schools can find a guide filled with strategies for reducing waste in every aspect of operation.  Families can find tools for creating a zero-waste lunch plan.   By reducing waste, we are preserving natural resources, reducing the carbon footprint and preserving valuable landfill space.  Click here to visit the EPA’s resources.


There is still time to reserve a seat for the Tour de Trash: Recycling and Demolition Recycling on Thursday, August 22nd. As construction of roads, rail, housing, and buildings continue on Oahu, learn how some companies are transforming this material into new, usable forms. Tour and transportation are completely free. Call 768-3200 now to sign up.


Visit West Oahu Aggregate to see how they separate and recycle demolition material for a variety of different purposes. Dirt is recycled into quality topsoil, rocks are crushed into various sizes for wall building and ground cover, and concrete and asphalt are used for aggregate in their recycled, ready-mix concrete.


PVT Land Company operates Oahu’s only construction and demolition landfill. Up to 80% of the total debris processed at PVT is recycled or processed into feed stock.  Learn how the feed stock is converted into synthetic natural gas through their gasification process.  The natural gas that is generated creates enough energy to power about 12,000 homes. Other material like metals are recycled overseas and rock and concrete are mixed as aggregate into road pavement.


Island Demo offers building deconstruction services to salvage as much as possible from demolition projects for reuse and recycling. Take a tour around their inner-city transfer station, which serves as a convenient option for contractors who can be spared the delivery to the PVT themselves.


There is one more Tour de Trash event scheduled for 2019. We are currently adding to a waitlist for our Tour de Trash: Recyclers and Waste Processors on Saturday, September 21st.  Call 768-3200 to sign up.

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