How can I get paid for recycling white office paper? (in Los Angeles)
September 3, 2008 4:48 PM   Subscribe

An acquaintance mentioned there are paper recyclers who would actually pay by the pound for while printed office paper. An initial google search yielded info on something called Recycle Bank on the East coast, as well as companies that will pick up and shred my documents for a fee (rather than pay *me* for the paper). If anybody knows specifically where to look in Los Angeles, that would be awesome. Otherwise, any suggestions about what key words to use to narrow down my search to appropriate organizations would also be helpful.

Why I'm asking: I'm a graduate student on a tight budget, preparing to move overseas. I have over a dozen boxes of journal article and book chapter copies that I've collected from my classes and various research projects over a few years. It hurts to let them go, but I absolutely won't be able to have them shipped. They won't even fit in the one puny blue bin my apartment building provides.

I'd like to recycle them responsibly, and if I can make some money in the process it would really help with the move.

Thanks in advance!
posted by gigimakka to Grab Bag (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
The Allen Company has several recycling centers in LA. I've used the SM facility many times, the people are helpful and the process is simple. Put your boxes on the scale, get a weight printout to give the cashier and take your cash. They do accept paper but I only have direct experience with metals. They might give you a quote on the phone, also ask when they are least busy.
posted by Fins at 7:07 PM on September 3, 2008 [1 favorite]

There are tons of recycling centers in the more down-to-earth areas of LA. Lots of people make extra money by collecting cans and other recyclables.

I brought an entire 5' filing cabinet's worth of office paper to the recycling center at W Temple St and N Commonwealth Ave. The nice gentleman there helped me to dump the paper into a can on a scale, and then he handed me a slip of paper with the weight on it. I took that to the cashier and got about $40.

You can bring aluminum cans, #1 and #2 plastics, and glass as well... they are all worth cash. Save all your recyclables, starting now, and you'll have some traveling money!
posted by oceanmorning at 8:48 PM on September 3, 2008 [1 favorite]

Interesting- back in the 80's, our family tried being responsible (and profitable) by doing the same thing with the daily newspapers and (voluminous) beer cans. Horrifying Saturday mornings of us kids smashing cans and tying papers, loading them into the station wagon, bringing them to the place, and walking away with $4. Yippee!

Does anyone know of a place in Chicago that does this now? Seems like bringing stuff that needs to be shredded anyway directly to a recycling place instead of shredding would be a break even just in saved effort. And if it makes a few bucks, even better.
posted by gjc at 7:32 AM on September 4, 2008

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