The Scoop on Glass Recycling during Quarantine: Updates on PRC Glass Program

Posted by: Stacy Albin on April 16, 2020


A note from the manager of PRC’s Recycling Glass Program, Ashley DiGregorio:

When PRC first piloted our Pop-Up Glass Events in early 2019, it was always with the hope that residents would one day be able to access that drop-off model on a regular basis – not just at a Saturday event. In light of the recent prohibition on social gatherings to slow the spread of COVID-19, PRC postponed or canceled all of our spring Pop-Up Glass Events scheduled before May 30, 2020. This is a small sacrifice to make in the interest of public safety, but it does not mean that you should stop saving glass bottles and jars for recycling. PRC’s current strategy is to provide residents with other resources for glass drop-off, as recycling collection is still considered an essential service, without having to attend a crowded event.

While pop-ups are on hold, many Pittsburgh-area permanent recycling drop-off facilities are still operating as of April 16th and can be safely accessed while running essential errands outside your home. PRC’s Glass Recycling Webpage features information about many permanent glass drop-off sites in the area, including some sites established in partnership with PRC directly.* If you are unable to take materials to one of these locations, consider asking a family member or neighbor to do so for you or continue saving glass until you are able to utilize a drop-off location.

In the meantime, the highest priority of PRC’s Glass Recycling Program is to work on long-term initiatives to strengthen the glass collection infrastructure in the region:

  • PRC is currently working to expand the number of permanent glass collection sites in the Pittsburgh area by working with several local municipalities. If you are interested in having a permanent glass drop-off in your community, please ask your municipal officials to contact us at glas[email protected] for more information.
  • We are exploring other immediate options for glass collection that eliminate the need for events or person-to-person interaction, such as hosting a glass collection bin for self-serve usage on a temporary basis. PRC continues to investigate these options in preparation for changes to Pennsylvania’s shelter-in-place orders.

We look forward to finding even more innovative solutions to glass recycling challenges, with your help. Until then, keep in mind that refuse and recycling collection are considered essential business under shelter-in-place laws, but that as with any activity during this period, residents should refer to the CDC’s guidelines and the Governor’s most recent orders for minimizing the risks of infection while using any recycling drop-off centers. Together, we can keep glass recycling thriving through this crisis and well into the future.

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