Zero Waste Quarterly Questions

Brian Gramling Front Porch Flyer

By Taylor Youngblood, Mueller Zero Waste Block Leader

Hi everyone, your zero waste block leader here. I’m sharing the roundup of zero waste questions I’ve received over the last several months.

Is anyone taking styrofoam to the Recycle & Reuse Drop-off Center?

Plastic Bags and Styrofoam recycled at RRDC, by Taylor Youngblood

We haven’t reactivated the Mueller Recycling Group so if you have foam and want to see if anyone is going, you can post in Mueller Neighbors Facebook group and ask if anyone has an appointment and has room for your items. 

Appointments are still required right now to drop-off items at the Recycle & Reuse Drop-off Center (RRDC). You can pick the day and time in the Austin Recycles app or online at It’s quick and easy.

A list of all items accepted is at

Where can I recycle batteries?

Library Battery Bucket, by Taylor Youngblood

– Austin Public Library locations near the circulation desk. Look for a black or gray five gallon bucket.

– By appointment at the Recycle & Reuse Drop-off Center at the Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) station under the covered drive thru.

– Rechargeable batteries can be dropped off at Home Depot near the exit.

Can Tetra Paks & Cartons be recycled in Austin?

Tetra Pak & Cartons, by Taylor Youngblood

No. Cartons also cannot be recycled in Austin. Tetra Paks and cartons are composite materials, a mix of plastic and paper and sometimes also metal, that while being cheaper and easier to ship, are extremely difficult to take apart to recycle so there is no option in Austin, or much of the US, to recycle or reuse these containers. Look for dairy or nondairy milk and creamers, egg replacement, and coconut water etc. in plastic or glass bottles which can be recycled in your blue curbside carts. 

Can I recycle big plastic bins or chairs, and where do I recycle broken pans and other metal?

Large plastic items may be put in or next to your recycling cart. Non-food container metals may be taken to the Recycle & Reuse Drop-off Center to the Scrap Metal station. You may also drop off your large plastic items at the Hard Plastic station at the RRDC.

Check What Do I Do With?

Austin Recycles Screenshot, by Taylor Youngblood

Check What Do I Do With? in the Austin Recycles app or online at for how to process an item and updates.