Frequently Asked Questions about the Curbside Recycling Service

1. What is the purpose of curbside recycling?

Curbside Recycling is an easy recycling method, available to the residential customers of Guan Solid Waste Authority (GSWA). Recycling has many positive benefits. It saves natural resources and energy by remanufacturing new products from certain waste materials. For example, when you recycle used paper, new paper products can be made, avoiding cutting down more trees. Discarded aluminum beverage containers can be remanufactured into new aluminum beverage containers, dramatically reducing the energy needed to make new containers. Recycling also reduces greenhouse gas emissions, extends the life of the landfill, and contributes to job creation. These are benefits we can all feel good about!



2. Will the Curbside Recycling Service raise my monthly fee?

No. The Curbside Recycling Service is provided to GSWA customers at no additional cost.



3. How will the Curbside Recycling Service work?

RecyclingIn late October 2013, GSWA started delivering 95-gallon recycling carts to each of its customer households. The carts come with information on what is to go into the cart and the day of the week GSWA provides recycling collection service. Customers must not place any trash into the recycling cart; doing so makes the recyclable materials less able to be processed into new products. A GSWA collection crew collects carts every other week on the same day as trash collection.



4. What materials can be recycled in the recycling carts?

The following materials is accepted:

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Types of items; how to prepare them

Not accepted

Cardboard and paper


Cardboard boxes (broken down), newspapers, magazines, office paper, catalogs,  cereal boxes, junk mail.

No books or pizza boxes.

Metal cans

Metal cans

Soda, beer and juice cans, pet food cans, vegetable cans, tuna cans, soup cans.  No need to crush cans.  Please discard lids and rinse cans.

No pots or pans.
No aluminum foil or foil containers.

Plastic bottles

Plastic bottles

Clear and colored plastic bottles that have  or  recycling symbols: milk bottles, soft drink bottles, and juice bottles. Please discard caps and rinse bottles.

No plastic bags or plastic wrap.  No take-out containers or bottles with numbers other than 1 or  2.



5. What materials is NOT be accepted in the recycling carts?

  • Household trash
    Soiled paper, diapers, packing materials (styrofoam peanuts), plastic containers with numbers 3-7, vegetable and food scraps, broken items, pizza boxes.
  • Plastic bags and plastic wrap
    Recycle plastic grocery bags at your local grocery store.
  • Glass bottles and jars


    Take glass to the recycling convenience centers at the Harmon, Agat, and Malojloj transfer stations.
  • Yard waste (grass clippings, prunings)

    Yard waste

    If you can’t compost in your yard, take these items to Northern Hardfill/Primo Heavy Equipment in Yigo (Phone: 687-3709)
  • Hazardous materials (batteries, paint, pesticides, antifreeze, motor oil, fluorescent light bulbs)
    See Guam EPA’s Recycling Guide for disposal options.
  • Electronics
  • Books
  • Aluminum foil and foil containers
  • Construction and demolition materials. Sand, rocks, bricks, carpet



6. Is recycling collection on the same day as my trash pickup?

Yes. Your recycling cart and trash cart are collected on the same day. However, trash collection continues to be every week whereas the recycling cart is collected every other week.



7. How will I know when my recycling collection is scheduled?

The brochure provided on your cart indicates whether your recycling collection schedule is either the 1st and 3rd or 2nd and 4th weeks of the month. You may sign up for automatic email reminders on the GSWA website. Once you sign up, GSWA will send you an email approximately 24 hours before your collection day to remind you to put your recycling cart out for collection.



8. Where should I put my recycling cart out for collection?

Place your recycling cart next to your trash cart on the day you are scheduled for recycling collection.



9. What happens to the recyclable materials after they are collected?

After the recyclables are collected from the curb or set-out locations, GSWA crews will deliver the materials to a contractor for sorting and shipping off-island to be used in making new products. The materials will not go to the landfill.



10. Who can participate in the Curbside Recycling Service?

All customers who are on regular GSWA collection routes and whose trash is collected by trash trucks will receive recycling carts. Approximately 15,500 customers are served on these routes. Another 1,000 customers are in difficult-to-reach locations where GSWA trash trucks cannot go and therefore have their trash collected by a GSWA employee in a pickup truck. These customers will not be provided a recycling cart at this time; however, GSWA will continue to work toward providing these customers with curbside recycling.



11. If I receive a recycling cart, may I opt out of the program?

GSWA hopes that you will want to participate in the recycling program. However, participation is entirely voluntary, and if you do not wish to participate, you can call the GSWA customer call center (646-3111) and ask to have your recycling cart taken back.



12. How is the Curbside Recycling Service rolled out?

GSWA began delivering the carts in late October2013. The deliveries began in the north and are working their way south until completed. Each cart delivered has a recycling informational sticker that indicates what can be placed in the cart for recycling. A hanging folder is attached to the cart with recycling information and the collection schedule for your location.



13. Will I get reminder notices if I put trash into my recycling cart?

Yes. Collection crews will monitor the material in the recycling cart to make sure that contamination (i.e., trash mixed with recyclables) is low. High levels of contamination make the recyclable material less able to be used in the manufacture of new products. If there is contamination in the recycling cart, the collection crew employees will leave a reminder notice on the cart noting the problem with the contents of the cart. Upon a customer’s third reminder notice, the recycling cart will be removed from the customer’s location.



14. If my recycling cart is repossessed because of contamination, can I get it back?

Yes. You will need to go the GSWA offices, speak with a customer service representative, sign a pledge to use the cart only for recycling, and pay a $50 restoration fee.



15. Can I get a second recycling cart if I need it?

Yes, you can get a second recycling cart. However, during the time GSWA is rolling out this new recycling program, we cannot provide a second recycling cart until all customers have their first recycling cart.



16. What should I do if the recycle truck accidentally misses my pick up?

Customer must call GSWA Customer Service within 24 hours of missed service. If determined that GSWA missed the collection, the service crew will return to collect the recycle.

However, should the customer forget to put our their cart on the day of recycle collection and GSWA service crew had already arrived, the customer's recycle cart will not be collected until the next scheduled recycle day.



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