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Thursday, October 3, 2019

No more curbside glass recycling

The purple bin at the Mason Government Center.
Fairfax County is no longer accepting glass bottles and jars in curbside recycling bins.

You now have two choices:
  • Bring your used glass containers to the purple glass-only recycling bin in the parking lot of the Mason Government Center at 6507 Columbia Pike, Annandale, or to one of the 20 other purple glass recycling bins in Fairfax County, Falls Church, or Alexandria. 
  • Put used glass in the trash. 
The purple bins can accept clean bottles and jars but not lamps, light bulbs, ceramics, porcelain, mirrors, windows, or sheet glass.

According to Fairfax County, the decision to no longer accept glass in curbside bins was made because glass often breaks, contaminating more valuable recyclables. China, the biggest purchaser of recycled materials, has tightened its standards on what it will accept.

Also, broken glass damages machinery, and because it’s heavy, it adds to the cost of transporting recyclables.


  1. Heart of Glass10/3/19, 4:58 PM

    Glass has been a completely reusable and recyclable material since its development in ancient times. How sad that we have come to this point where most glass will be thrown in the trash, pass through the incinerator, to end up in a landfill. Even the glass that is put in the purple bins will not be recycled, but just ground up to be mixed with asphalt for paving. What a sad end for a noble material.

  2. Leslie Plummer10/3/19, 11:25 PM

    Please confirm with the Landfills that the purple bins are still at West Ox & Lorton for folks to bring their clean glass bottles! So, it's JUST mix-use CURBSIDE recycling no longer including glass, for breakable, et al, reasons, right? And, recycling trucks have no means to store any separated curbide glass, I'm surmising. Fairfax County has purple bins AND has even lent more purple bins to Prince William County and other regional RECYLING centers, which are then carted back up to Fairfax to make one BIG collection of glass, for recycling. Please don't sell this collection opportunity short! Thx.

  3. OMG, China is now calling the shots in Fairfax County. You all better brush up on your mandarin!