Recycling Collection Program

Why Should I Recycle? 

Recycling is the process of collecting and processing materials that would otherwise be sent to landfill and transforming these materials into new products. Recycling is important because it reduces the amount of waste sent to landfills, conserves valuable natural resources such as timber and minerals, prevents pollution and saves energy by reducing the need to collect new raw materials, helps create domestic jobs in the recycling and manufacturing industries, and provides many other community and environmental benefits. 

Proper sorting makes a difference! When we recycle more of the right things the right way, we help our economy and the environment by ensuring quality recyclables can be recovered and delivered back into the economy instead of sent to landfills.

What is Single-Stream Recycling?

Single-stream recycling allows you to place all your clean and dry recyclable materials—plastic, glass and metal food and beverage containers, mixed paper, and cardboard—into the gray 64-gallon Recycling Cart.

Can I Request a Different-Sized Cart?

You may request a smaller (35-gallon) or larger (96-gallon) Recycling Cart or get assistance with any of your recycling service-related questions or requests by contacting Tri-CED Community Recycling at (510) 429-8030.

What Materials are Accepted in my Gray Recycling Cart?

Acceptable items include:

  • Paper and paper products (clean and dry)
    • Magazines
    • Newspaper, including inserts, coupons, and store ads
    • Printing/writing paper
    • Junk mail
    • Catalogs and phone books
    • Shredded paper (sealed in a paper bag)
    • Cardboard (flattened)
    • Paper boxes (e.g., shoe and cereal boxes)
    • Paper egg cartons
    • Paper bags
  • Plastic bottles, jugs, trays, and tubs labeled #1-2 (clean and empty)
  • Glass bottles and jars (clean and empty) 
  • Aluminum and metal
    • Food and beverage cans (clean and empty) 
    • Foil and scrap metal pieces (clean)

Proper sorting makes a difference! Avoid contamination by keeping recyclables clean, dry, empty, and loose. Rinse/wipe food residue and empty liquids from your plastic, glass, and aluminum containers. Do not bag recyclables.

What Materials are Prohibited in My Gray Recycling Cart? 

Compostable and landfill materials may not be disposed of in your Recycling Cart as per California’s Organics Reduction and Recycling Law (Senate Bill 1383) and Union City Municipal Code Chapter 7.24. Compostable and landfill materials must be sorted and placed in the appropriate cart.  

  • Plastic bags, film, and wrap
  • Plastic utensils
  • Snack packaging (e.g., chip bags and candy wrappers)
  • Aseptic (shelf-stable) containers (e.g., lined juice, soup, dairy cartons and pouches)
  • Styrofoam products (e.g., cups, plates, meat/seafood trays, packing peanuts, and blocks)
  • Grease/food-soiled paper (place in the Compost Cart)
  • Food scraps (place in the Compost Cart)
  • Yard trimmings (place in the Compost Cart)
  • Mirrors
  • Ceramics
  • Hoses
  • Plastic or wire clothes hangers
  • Personal hygiene items (e.g., diapers, sanitary napkins, disposable gloves/masks)
  • Pet waste
  • Carpets, rugs, and mats (if these cannot be donated)
  • Shoes, clothing, and toys (if these cannot be donated)
  • Dirt, rock, asphalt, concrete, brick, and construction and demolition debris

It is illegal to dispose of household hazardous waste (HHW) such as chemicals, cleaners, fertilizers, paint, pesticides, propane tanks, sharps, and electronic waste in your curbside collection carts. HHW materials require careful disposal by a certified facility. Safely dispose of HHW for free at an Alameda County HHW Drop-off Facility or at County-sponsored events throughout the year. For drop-off facility locations, hours, and a list of accepted items, call (800) 606-6606 or visit www.StopWaste.org/HHW.

How Do I Get More Information? 

For more information about the Recycling Collection Program, please call Tri-CED Community Recycling at (510) 429-8030 or Union City Recycles at (510) 675-5466.

Click here for a PDF of the Residential Service Guide.