Is a lack of recycling bins causing our waste to be wasted away?

West Lafayette has a crazy amount of apartment complexes, so you can imagine how much waste is produced on the properties. Plus, the city is still growing.

Posted: Aug 14, 2018 11:43 PM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI)- West Lafayette has a crazy amount of apartment complexes, so you can imagine how much waste is produced on the properties. Plus, the city is still growing.

Newer buildings like the downtown high rises are planning for that with recycling, but it's an option that most complexes in the city don't currently have. That means a lot of that waste isn't being separated.

People produce a lot of trash every day.

"The cat food is the worst."

West Lafayette Street Commissioner Ben Anderson really knows trash.

"You can deal with the beer and you can deal with the soda cans and all the smell that comes with that, but them cat food cans- it is righteous," Anderson said.

There's one trend News 18 noticed at local apartment complexes that, like an empty cat food can, is total garbage.

Recycling bins don't exist on several properties throughout West Lafayette, leaving residents to dispose of their recyclables the only way provided; in the trash.

Purdue Student Mikayla Melin's apartment complex does not have recycling bins on the property, but recycling has always been important to her family.

"My dad would take us every week," Melin said. "He was like 'okay let's make sure to put the recycles in the recycles.'"

Anderson says the West Lafayette Recycling Department sees about 525 cars per day dropping off items, but the city is still missing out on a lot.

"You're probably talking a small percentage of probably 20-25% of those apartment units that probably offer recycling at their location," Anderson said.

News 18 went to a couple complexes asking why they don't have recycling bins. They didn't want to go on camera, but both said they used to have bins on the property. 

One told us that residents weren't using them properly, and the other said they would like to have them back, but it's expensive.

But there's good news-

"Going forward, any project that happens in West Lafayette that if you're going to build an apartment complex or housing development of any type, that you have a designated area for recycling," Anderson said. 

Making the city's overall goal to not be so wasteful with our waste.

"It takes two seconds out of your day, and it does so much for the Earth," Melin said.

Anderson said if you're looking to start recycling to start with just one item. If you typically go through a lot of cans, start separating now, because a small start can go a long way.

If you're looking for a way to dispose of your items properly- click here to view a list of nearby drop off locations in Tippecanoe County. 

West Lafayette
Few Clouds
82° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 83°
Kokomo
Few Clouds
78° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 80°
Rensselaer
Scattered Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 79°
Fowler
Scattered Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 79°
Williamsport
Scattered Clouds
79° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 81°
Crawfordsville
Overcast
81° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 82°
Frankfort
Overcast
81° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 82°
Delphi
77° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 78°
Monticello
77° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 78°
Logansport
Broken Clouds
79° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 80°
Warm Day, Record Warm Night, Then Showers & Storms Friday
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 152396

Reported Deaths: 4023
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion24905785
Lake13380352
St. Joseph8985161
Elkhart8530132
Allen7978222
Hamilton6000113
Vanderburgh567560
Tippecanoe358714
Monroe322238
Hendricks3221130
Johnson3051128
Porter303648
Clark289161
Delaware284574
Vigo256038
Madison232493
Cass222822
LaPorte220958
Warrick190065
Kosciusko179224
Floyd177367
Howard160066
Bartholomew139758
Dubois136726
Marshall134226
Henry123429
Grant122639
Wayne122127
Boone119548
Hancock115645
Noble114633
Jackson109413
Morgan93040
Dearborn92828
Daviess85333
Gibson84911
Clinton82916
Lawrence82634
Shelby80330
LaGrange77715
Harrison74824
Knox72110
Putnam71616
DeKalb69911
Posey6896
Fayette61417
Steuben6118
Miami5875
Montgomery57822
Jasper5744
White57215
Greene52137
Scott51013
Decatur49939
Adams4815
Whitley4426
Clay4396
Sullivan42913
Ripley4278
Wells4205
Wabash4029
Starke3977
Orange38825
Huntington3805
Spencer3746
Franklin36625
Washington3632
Jennings36013
Fulton3472
Randolph3439
Jefferson3305
Pike32915
Carroll31713
Perry29714
Jay2946
Fountain2883
Tipton27023
Vermillion2251
Newton22211
Parke2223
Rush2084
Owen2031
Blackford1983
Martin1960
Crawford1531
Pulaski1481
Brown1303
Ohio1247
Benton1080
Union1060
Switzerland900
Warren761
Unassigned0233

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events