Recycling Changes in Pittsburgh

Hello Squirrel Hill! Below is an update on recycling from our new Board Member and Litter Patrol Committee Leader Rachel Lecrone.

Recycling Changes in the City of Pittsburgh

“Are you wondering why they haven’t picked up your recycling lately?   Pittsburgh went plastic bag free at the end of 2023.  This means that recycling is no longer accepted in plastic bags!  If you are still placing recycling in the blue bags or even just lining your recycling bin with a plastic bag, the recycling collectors will pass you by.  You are responsible for unbagging your materials and placing them loose in a bin. 

The rules of recycling are:

  1. Place clean materials for recycling in the blue recycling bin
  2. Flatten cardboard and bundle or box it for recycling
  3. Don’t include any materials that are not recyclable!

The City of Pittsburgh’s program accepts:

Wishful Recycling = Contamination

Just because you think it should be recyclable doesn’t mean that the City of Pittsburgh’s program can handle it.   Including these items drives up the costs and may make it impossible to recycle other materials that come in contact with contaminants

Some surprising things that CANNOT be recycled:

Do you want to maximize your recycling efforts?

Many items like batteries and electronics can be recycled at designated drop off centers.  For more information please visit the City of Pittsburgh Department of Public Works Recycling Page at   Or visit Recycle This Pittsburgh at for answers to your questions about what can be recycled curbside and the best alternatives.”

about SHUC

Preserving, Improving, and Celebrating the Quality of Life in Squirrel Hill

For over fifty years, the Coalition has been an active and important link in the community. It has served as a sounding board for new ideas, as well as a “watchdog” in the areas of public safety, education, residential quality, the business district, and parks and open space. With its focus on the quality of life in the 14th Ward, SHUC continues to monitor activities and future developments in the community through a range of standing committees.


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