Glass Recycling

By: Claire Tribble

Why recycle your glass? The decomposition rate of glass in NONE, meaning every piece of glass ever made is still on this earth in some form. There are no microorganisms on the Earth that are able to break down glass materials. Glass is 100% recyclable, and can be recycled endlessly with no loss in quality or purity. Recycled glass can be used to substitute for up to 95% of raw materials. Recycled glass is always part of the recipe for glass, the more used in the process, the less energy and raw materials are used, which leads to a lower cost. The more glass is recycled, the greater the benefits to our environment are!

The container and fiberglass industries collectively purchase 3.35 million tons of recycled glass annually. Over a TON of natural resources are saved for every TON of glass recycled. Energy costs drop 2-3% for every 10% of recycled glass used in production. Using recycled glass even extends the plant life of the equipment used. All of this saves us, the consumers MONEY, and we all benefit from that. Just a few things made from recycled glass — more bottles, countertops, tiles, Glassphalt, beads, and construction materials.

As I’m sure everyone knows, there is no way recycle glass in Limestone County. In fact, there is only one place in all North Alabama that can recycle glass — Phoenix Glass Recycling of North Alabama in Huntsville. Not only do they accept bottles and jars for recycling, but they also have a store to shop for stemware, dishes, whole containers, etc.! In 2024, they will have a monthly Shop, Drop & Free Glass Friday! They have the best, most informative website as well. Even though their website ( has the answer to most any question you may have, I’m going to make it even easier. Yes, there is a MINIMAL fee to drop your glass. I’m talking $5 processing fee for nonsubscribers, and $5 per cart. A cart holds an average of 100 bottles. They do prefer you book an appointment to drop off (you can do that through their website) as well as to shop unless it’s a Shop, Drop & Free Glass Friday.

Let’s talk about Shop, Drop & Free Glass Friday. Each month will feature a different color and type of glassware that is FREE! This is a fantastic opportunity for people collecting for weddings or parties and crafters! They have special pricing on certain items such as Pyrex, stemware, kitchenware, and more! They also accept glass with no appointment for only $5 per cart during this event. Just for an example, the January event featured free brown glass (like growlers), and bar and kitchenware 4 for $1. This is a great opportunity for anyone who is stocking a new kitchen!

Follow Phoenix Glass Recycling of North Alabama or Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful (I will share the event) on Facebook to keep up with the monthly Shop, Drop & Free Glass Friday fliers. The deals are there to be taken and help curb the environmental effects of glass! It’s a win-win! If you have any questions, visit…I’m sure the answer is there!

By: Claire Tribble – Executive Director, Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful