SPOKANE, Wash. — A brewery in Minneapolis is offering free beer in exchange for plastic can holders. That's because most recycling centers cannot recycle the plastic properly.
Turns out, city of Spokane's Solid Waste Disposal cannot recycle them either. That's according to solid waste education coordinator Kris Major.
"Anytime you start getting plastics that are flat, whether it's a lid or these rings or even frozen dinner trays, when everything is put in a bin, it's co-mingled and it goes to a material recovery facility to be sorted, they just can't sort that separately from paper," Major said.
While the plastic can holders cannot be recycled in Spokane, they can be burned down and used for energy.
"The plastic is burned up because it's a fossil fuel product and we recover energy from that," Major said. "So we're able to generate up to 22 megawatts of electricity continuously by burning the garbage, which is enough to power 13,000 homes."
No-Li Brewhouse, a popular brewery in Spokane, uses the plastic packaging for their six packs. But, owner John Bryant said their plastic is actually biodegradable.
"It's all about sustainability, and it does take extra time and extra money, but it's something we're projecting forward into the future," Bryant said. "But just to know that every one of these was already 100 percent reused from plastic bottles and you wrap your mind around 100 million plus bottles, plastic milk jugs that were saved by this process is pretty cool."
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