This is a paid piece from Millennium Recycling.

Simplified: All Sioux Falls businesses should be recycling – per city ordinance – but not all of them are. Here's what you need to know about business recycling and how to help get more area businesses on board.

Why it matters

  • Business recycling is important for the same reason recycling at home is important: It keeps things out of the landfill. And because businesses tend to use more materials than an average household, business recycling can accomplish this goal at a larger scale.
  • Recycling is also required for businesses under city ordinance. Chapter 57 of the code of ordinances states it's the duty of business owners to provide separate garbage and recycling receptacles "of sufficient size and number."
  • Millennium Recycling offers help for businesses who want to recycle but don't know where to get started. Businesses can set up a waste assessment to have someone from the Millennium team help the company work with its waste hauler as well as help explain what materials can be processed by single-stream recycling.
"It's something that the public wants to see," said Marissa Begley, communications and education director. "We get phone calls all the time asking why some places aren't recycling."

Why aren't more businesses recycling?

Because recycling is an additional service for businesses, it may come at an additional cost through their hauling provider.

"A lot of them see that as a barrier," President Shannon Dwire said.

Dwire also said businesses might see recycling at work as more complicated than recycling at home, and keeping consistency in recycling requires management to be on board.

What's the downside of businesses who don't recycle?

Less recycling means more stuff ends up in the landfill.

"The more you're filling the landfill, the higher waste management costs will ultimately be for everybody," Dwire said.

And that's not to mention the environmental cost to throwing away materials that could've had another life, Begley added.

How can I help?

If you're a business owner, and you're not recycling, you can get started by talking to your waste hauler or reaching out to Millennium Recycling.

If you're an employee of a business that's not recycling, Millennium Recycling also has resources for how to talk to management about identifying materials that could be recycled and getting the process started.

If you're a customer, and you're shopping at a place that doesn't have a recycling bin available for you, ask the question. Businesses who see more customer demand for recycling may be more likely to make it happen, Begley said.