Reduce. Reuse. Recycle
St. Petersburg is setting out to be a Zero Waste City. The Office of Sustainability & Resiliency and Sanitation Department are working together to set goals and milestones to reach the Zero Waste goal.
Recently, citizens and businesses have shown significant interest in the City of St. Petersburg facilitating more robust ocean-friendly business practices, including a plastic bag ban, plastics reduction incentives, or similar programs. The City is seeking input from local businesses in shaping potential programs which would help businesses reduce or eliminate plastic bags. If you are a business owner or manager or have purchasing responsibilities for a business, we encourage you to share your input with a brief survey related to single-use plastic bag policies. Confidential results will be compiled by USFSP and researchers at the USF College of Marine Science and released later this spring.
The city currently operates the mandatory residential recycling program. Look on your recycling cart for a list of accepted recycling items that may be placed inside the cart.
Multi-family (larger than 4 units) and commercial recycling needs are currently served by commercial operators. Contact WastePro, 727-224-8921, or Conex Recycling, 813-919-0340, to inquire about service.
Free city services, drop off sites and sanitation metrics can be found on the city Sanitation page.
The Tampa Bay Region has partnered to improve recycling programs. Check out Tampa Bay Recycles for more information and see the tips below.
For information on the Pinellas County landfill and waste-to-energy plant visit http://www.pinellascounty.org/solidwaste/wte.htm.
Don’t see what you are looking for? Try the Waste Wizard to see what’s recyclable, where to drop off clothes, and more!
Compost Information from UF-IFAS
The University of Florida-IFAS is a federal, state, and county partnership dedicated, in part, to developing knowledge in agriculture and to making that knowledge accessible to the general public. The University of Florida-IFAS website includes an extensive library of information for Florida gardeners.
Yard Waste and Mulch Program
The City’s yard waste recycling process begins with source-separated yard waste brought to our five convenient brush site locations by you, the resident. Next, the City processes the yard waste into mulch. Mulch benefits the soil by providing nutrients, suppressing weed growth, and reducing water usage. In following Florida Best Management Practices as set forth in “Recycling Yard Trash: Best Management Practices Manual for Florida,” the City’s mulch products are free of weed seeds, plant pathogens, and harmful insects.
The city offers several different mulch products, either free or for a nominal cost. All are available for delivery.
Waste Reduction Tips
St. Petersburg residents throw away 7 lbs of waste per day (per capita number including commercial and brush), that’s 320,000 tons per year.
Avoid waste, save money, and protect our environment:
- Food storage and waste prevention tips. It's not only good for the environment, but it can also save you money! BigOven will find you recipes based on the ingredients you enter in the search box.
- Reduce paper waste by stopping unwanted junk mail and phone books. Check out Pinellas County Junk Mail Reduction Kit.
- Print double-sided and learn other ways to save paper.
- Bring your own reusable bags, containers, and coffee mug when you shop.
- Rent equipment or share items via lending libraries.
- Get creative! Great additional tips available at the Pinellas County website.
Reusing products cuts your disposal costs and supports a significant local economy:
- Sell items you no longer want and find bargains at consignment shops, garage sales, thrift stores, online exchanges and auctions like eBay and Craig’s List.
- Buy salvaged building materials and architectural pieces.
- Household products such as paints and cleaners are offered at the Pinellas County Swap Shop - no need to swap, it’s free! (2855 109th Ave N. St. Petersburg. Same location as electronic and chemical drop off.)
Try the Waste Wizard to see what’s recyclable, where to drop off clothes, and more!
Why recycle? 77% of the incoming trash to the Solid Waste Facility could be recycled!
- Good for our economy – Helps create new, well-paying jobs in the recycling and manufacturing industries in the United States
- Saves money – reduces your tipping fees at landfill; quality, non-contaminated recyclables increases value and demand for St. Petersburg’s recyclables which can increase revenue for the City to use in improving programs.
- Reduces waste -The average American discards 4.4 lbs of garbage every day, not counting commercial and yard waste (2013 EPA estimates).
- Good for the environment - Recycling requires far less energy, uses fewer natural resources, and keeps waste from piling up in landfills.
- Saves energy - Recycling offers significant energy savings over manufacturing with virgin materials. Manufacturing with recycled aluminum cans uses 95% less energy.
- Preserves landfill space – Purposing rare available land to other uses is preferred over developing new landfillls. Recycling preserves existing landfill space.
- Reduces greenhouse gas emissions, which are a cause of expedited climate change.
- Reduces water pollution - Making goods from recycled materials generates far less water pollution than manufacturing from virgin materials.
- Protects wildlife - Using recycled materials reduces the need to damage forests, wetlands, rivers and other places essential to wildlife.
- Creates new demand - Buying recycled products creates demand for more recycled products, decreasing waste and helping our economy.