Tale of the tape


I’m writing as an archivist who needs to recycle old VHS, Betamax and cassette tapes. I do know the tapes themselves are toxic when burned (which is what will happen to them if we toss them in the trash in Indianapolis). Several places in town used to recycle them, but they no longer do. The only place I’ve found that will take them is GreenDisk, but the materials must be shipped across the country. Any good alternatives or bright ideas? I’ll share your answer with other Indiana archivists in similar positions. Many thanks,


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I think you’ll appreciate that I turned to the Ask Renee archives for your answer. And since it’s right around Groundhog Day, I thought it would be appropriate to repeat it just for you!

Sally, sweetheart, I hope you don’t mind that I use Terms of Endearment when I tell you that there is a place in Indianapolis that will recycle old tapes. As you surmise, there’s some kind of Weird Science with recycling tapes that’s best left to the specialized plastics recycling Goonies at Plastic Recycling Inc.

They will grind up old tapes and start the process of turning them into new products. They are only open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. though, which can be challenging unless it’s Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

Anyway, I don’t want to turn this in to The Neverending Story of recycling. That’s actually The Secret of My Success — short and sweet answers to your green questions!

Piece out, Renee

(EDITOR'S NOTE: Renee Sweaney has been penning this column for Indiana Living Green for years, and we've begun making her work available on both indianalivinggreen.com and nuvo.net. And, NO, "Piece out" is not a typo! See here.)


Renee Sweany is NUVO's green living advice blogger.

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