WNEP.com | News, Weather & Sports from WNEP-TV — Proud to Serve Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania

Recycling changes amid coronavirus outbreak

Coronavirus is now affecting what can be picked up from your curb. Many people who live in Lackawanna County won't have their glass and plastic picked up next week.

SCRANTON, Pa. — Starting Monday, many Lackawanna County residents will not have their bottles, jars, and cans picked up on recycling day.

County officials say to throw it out or hold on to it until the coronavirus pandemic ends.

Some residents say in times like these things are already crowded.

"Well, I can't hold on to it, that's ridiculous," said Tom Rotko. "I just got no place to put it, where you going to store all that stuff?"

There's no indication how long the comingle ban could be in place for municipalities that send their recycling to the center on Boulevard Avenue in Scranton.

The recycling center will still be taking cardboard and paper during the pandemic.

"My wife and I talked about it, we said we're going to save what we can as long as we can, wash them and save them. Because they're telling us to put them in the garbage and I don't think we should put them in the garbage because we're trying to save the landfills," Ron Fowler said.

You may be wondering why the Lackawanna County Recycling Center can take your cardboard and paper but not your glass, plastic, and aluminum. According to the National Institutes of Health, coronavirus can live on paper for about an hour but on bottles and jars, it can live for days.

At a time when the pandemic seems to be affecting every aspect of our lives, even What's picked up at our curbs, Randy Stroh helped put it in perspective.

"my son runs a restaurant right down the road here and it's closed because of this whole thing, so actually recycling is the least of my worries right now," Stroh said.