• dudenhoefferdiana

Recycling is worlds easier with the City of Springfield's Waste Wizard

Updated: Aug 25


Logo from the City of Springfield website

Have you ever stood in front of recycling, trash, and compost bins — and you don’t have a clue where to put your waste? It feels like a pop quiz with no way to know the right answer afterwards.


We’ve all been there: In fact, results from OHRD’s July Recycling Attitudes survey found that over 55% of respondents reported they are either often or sometimes confused about whether something is recyclable. That’s where the Waste Wizard becomes a valuable resource for residents throughout the Ozarks. The City of Springfield created the free, searchable database with disposal options for hundreds of common items.


It’s easy to use, too. Simply type the name of a waste item and the Wizard will tell you how to recycle or dispose of it. Instead of taking up space in the landfill, it’s often possible to find recycling, donating or repurposing options. And when the waste item truly is landfill waste, you can throw it away confident that you’re making the right choice.


Other relevant information is displayed in each entry, too, such as addresses for recycling centers or other special instructions.


The Wizard also has a waste-sorting game for users who want to test their recycling knowledge. Players who correctly sort coffee pods, tea bags, pens and markers, soup boxes, fish leftovers, and other common household waste items into piles for the landfill, compost pile, recycling center, etc. earn prizes to place in their digital parks in front of Springfield’s skyline.


Game screenshot from the City of Springfield website

The game allows you to quiz yourself in a setting free from consequences, whereas accidentally throwing a real-life TV in the landfill instead of recycling it can have adverse repercussions on humans and nature alike.


Find out more about recycling in Springfield at https://www.springfieldmo.gov/recycling.


 

About the Author


Diana Dudenhoeffer is a multimedia journalist from Springfield, Missouri. She studied journalism, sustainability and documentary storytelling at Missouri State University. She is the current media intern at OHRD, writing blogposts like this one.