New Mexico: Know What to Throw By Cassie McClure and Suzanne Michaels

New Mexico: Know What to Throw

By Cassie McClure and Suzanne Michaels

The South Central Solid Waste Authority (SCSWA), in partnership with the New Mexico Recycling Coalition (NMRC) and the entire Rio Grande Recycling Corridor, has launched a statewide recycling education campaign geared to teach New Mexicans how to recycle right by urging them to “Know What to Throw.”

“There are many misconceptions about what can and can’t be recycled, and a view that it’s complicated,” said Patrick Peck, SCSWA director. “Our goal is to set the record straight. Recycling right is simple, and with a few easy tips, every New Mexican can ensure they’re doing their part to recycle the right materials.”

The state-wide campaign “Know What to Throw New Mexico” aims to combat the most pressing recycling issues found across the state, including eliminating food waste and plastic bags in blue recycling containers.

Las Crucens may have already seen the digital billboard on South Solano Drive that reminds them of NMRC’s website

It’s an effort to help New Mexicans recycle properly. The campaign promotes the following basic rules:


  • Empty, clean and dry items get recycled. Food residue and liquids should be rinsed from containers before recycling. Dirty materials are not recyclable and will create costly errors in the process.
  • Don’t bag your recyclables! Loose items get recycled. Plastic bags and plastic wrap are never allowed in the blue recycle bins. Additionally, no “tanglers”! No electric cords, rubber hoses, or strings of lights.
  • Know what to throw for your area. While many areas can recycle paper, plastics, cardboard, and aluminum and tin cans, each city or county has specific guidelines based upon the mills and processing facilities that are nearby enough to make it reasonable to ship for processing. Visit for details specific to each area of the state.


“As important as it is for people to recycle, it’s even more important for them to recycle right,” said Peck. “It’s our hope that, through this campaign, New Mexicans will not only be educated, but also inspired to do what they can for their environment and their communities.”

Green Connections is submitted by the South Central Solid Waste Authority (SCSWA) managing solid waste, recyclables, and working to stop illegal dumping for residents and businesses throughout Doña Ana County. Contact the SCSWA at (575) 528-3800 or visit



PHOTO 1: Have you seen the new addition to the digital billboard on South Solano Drive? It’s a reminder to be aware of what you throw into your recycling. Helpful tips can be found at