Recycling & Trash Program

Pay-As-You-Throw Program for all Residents with Municipal Trash Collection

Collection Information - Harvey 1-800-321-3002

The Harvey Pick-Up Street Schedule (PDF)

Holiday Schedule

  • New Year's Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving
  • Christmas

When the actual holiday (not the observed day) falls on a normal collection day, the collection will be delayed one day for each day of the week, I.e. Monday's collections will be on Tuesday and so on until Friday's collections will be on Saturday. if the holiday is on a weekend and observed on another day during the week, then there will be normal pickups for the week (unless there are other unforeseen delays).

Learn what is recyclable using the Recyclopedia Website search tool where residents can search for hundreds of items (from paper bags to pizza boxes) to find out what can and cannot be recycled. (more information is provided below)

For further information please watch the Lunenburg recycling forum that took place on January 15th, 2020. (please click on the date to take you to the youtube video)

Or watch the helpful video on Lunenburg public access at the Lunenburg recycling update.


  • Should be placed at the curb no later than 7 am on the morning collection day, the same as recycling pickup.
  • All bags must be tied. (Do not fill large as more than 30 lbs)
  • You must use the yellow 13-gallon (Small), 33-gallon (Large), or 40-gallon (New X-Large) town trash bags. 
  • Bags can be purchased at the following locations:
    Try other locations if bags are out of stock.
    • Hannaford Supermarket - 333 Mass Avenue
    • Smokestack Roasters, LLC - 39 Mass Avenue
    • MAKI - 160 Mass Avenue
    • Honey Farms - 134 Leominster-Shirley Road
    • Hilltop Farms- 1 Main Street 
    • Lunenburg Golf- 451 Massachusetts Avenue
    • Baker's Whalom Variety- 423 Elective Avenue
  • Small (13-gallon) -10/pkg for $16.10
  • Large (33-gallon) - 5/pkg for $16.39
  • X-Large (40 gallon) - 5/pkg for $25.07
  • No Construction Material or scrap metal is allowed in Trash Bags - Arrange special pickup with Harvey, it is an additional $75 per barrel
  • No Yard Waste - Arrange special pickup with Harvey, it is an additional $75 per bag/barrel
  • No additional fees apply
  • Non-conforming bags will be left at the curbside and will be the responsibility of the resident.
  • No Textiles or Mattresses - Items should be donated, or pickup with a private company should be planned

For more information please visit: Textile Collection Organizations Operating in Massachusetts Or go to the Recycle Smart Website to search for more options.


Harvey Website

The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) announced a groundbreaking, statewide recycling education initiative to reduce contamination in recycling by asking residents to “do their part and recycle smart.”  The cornerstone of this initiative is their new website called RecycleSmart which features the “Smart Recycling Guide” called the Recyclopedia.  There is also a video showing the recycling sorting process inside an MRF (materials recovery facility) and answers to frequently asked questions about why and how to recycle smart.

  • Lunenburg Recycling Is free-of-charge.
  • Should be placed at the curb no later than 7 am on the morning of collection day, the same as trash pickup.
  • All accepted recycling material (listed below) can be placed in the same bin.
  • The DPW no longer has the yellow recycle bins available or stickers for bins.
  • Any bin can be used for Recyclables, does not need to be a town bin (as they are no longer available)
  • “Beyond the Bin” is a website where you can search for places to recycle items that do not belong in your recycling bin, please visit Beyond the Bin

What Can Go In Your Recycling Bin

Please Do Not Put Recyclables In Any Plastic Bags

  • Mixed paper and clean cardboard (Cardboard cannot be larger than 2ft x 2ft)
  • Clean Metal food and beverage cans
  • Clean Glass bottles and jars
  • Empty and clean Plastic bottles, jars, jugs, and tubs

Check the printable poster of all Accepted and Not Accepted Recycling items (PDF)

What Cannot Go Into Your Recycle Bin

All below items cannot go into your recycling bin, they belong in your yellow town trash bag. Unless items are donated (as suggested below) or recycled elsewhere (see Terracycle).

  • Plastic retail bags - must be placed in the trash, however, all bags with a recycle symbol can be returned at Hannaford.
  • Loose plastic wrappers (the plastic film around new items or fruit, etc.)
  • Food wrappers/Plastic snack bags (Candy wrappers, microwaveable food bags, chip bags, Ziploc bags, etc.)
  • Thin plastic containers/Packing plastic (Containers that hold fruit and vegetables, the plastic that protects new items, etc.)
  • Dirty food containers - can only be recycled when cleaned and properly rinsed out.
  • Food and liquids - please empty and rinse all bottles and cans.
  • Take out containers (paper, cardboard, styrofoam, etc)
  • Plastic straws, plastic cups, plastic cutlery (forks, spoons, knives, etc)
  • Paper plates and paper cups (coffee cups, water cups, etc)
  • Paper towels and napkins - paper towels can be composted.
  • Shredded paper - has to be placed in the trash as this breaks machinery
  • Styrofoam (coffee cups, bowls, plates, take-out containers, etc)
  • Wax-coated juice/milk/broth/creamer containers - you can recycle plastic spouts but the container has to be put in the trash.
  • Large bulky plastics (toys, plastic bins, broken chairs/tables, etc.) - donation of toys and furniture may be possible.
  • Small electronics/cords - cords are accepted at Best Buy.
  • “Tanglers” (hoses, wires, chains, strings of lights, etc.)
  • Aerosol cans - Lunenburg does not accept but other towns do, possibly able to donate elsewhere.
  • Clothing, linens, or any kind of textile material - donations are accepted in drop-off containers.

Please click on this link for a printable poster of all items that do and do not belong in your recycling

Also Remember: “Beyond the Bin” is a website where you can search for places to recycle items that do not belong in your recycling bin.

Contamination of the Recycling stream is a growing problem.

China which was the biggest importer of recyclable materials, recently stopped accepting "dirty" recycling, (mixed bundles of {contaminated} recyclable materials) causing a significant problem for the United States. Other countries have also taken this stance making the market even smaller. Now, where will all of it go and who will be willing to pay for it?

When recycling first started materials were less contaminated than what is collected today due to the separate streams of recyclables. The inconvenience of having to clean and separate things kept many from recycling. To create more participation, the single-stream recycling program was created. People could put all of the materials into one bin and it would be separated elsewhere and recycled for reuse. Since it was easier, recycling rates increased. Today most recycling programs in the United States are now single-stream.

Although recycling rates were higher, the level of contamination of each material increased due to the "single stream" collection. People are not properly cleaning food containers and small amounts of trash including plastic bags are commonly mixed into their recycling bins. When bits of glass or plastic are mixed with paper, the value is reduced as it adds additional cost to separate them. Having to clean or dispose of dirty plastic containers also adds cost to reusing them. At this time the low cost of petroleum has reduced the cost of making new plastic, therefore some of the incentive to recycle is lost. When plastic bags are introduced into the recycling stream they become caught in the separation machinery requiring a shutdown to remove them.

Free Recycling Programs

TerraCycle offers free recycling programs funded by brands, manufacturers, and retailers around the world to help you collect and recycle your hard-to-recycle waste. Simply choose the programs you’d like to join; start collecting in your home, school, or office; download free shipping labels; and send us your waste to be recycled. You can even earn rewards for your school or favorite non-profit!

Additional Curbside Recycling

Additional Curbside Recycling Call Harvey at 1-800-321-3002 to schedule an appointment for pickup. An additional fee will apply.

  • Household appliances
  • Furniture  TVs, computers, other electronics
  • Large metal items
  • Tires (remove rims)

Note: Harvey may not be accepting any and all items listed above, pickup is at their discretion.

Yard Waste - 2023 Fall Dates: October 7th to November 18th

  • Landfill – Youngs Road
  • Leaves, grass, and other easily raked materials
  • Collection days – Saturday ONLY, 8 am to 4  pm
  • NO plastic bags   
  • NO stumps
  • Only available 6 weeks in the Spring and 7 weeks in the Fall

Hazardous Waste

Can be disposed of at Devens Regional Household Hazardous Productions Collections Center. Visit Devens HHW Website for more Information and Materials.

Latex paint is not "hazardous waste", simply let dry out in the container and dispose of it in the trash.

If you experience problems with the collection of solid waste or recycling, please call Harvey at 800-321-3002. For general information on Lunenburg's program please call the DPW at 978-582-4160.

Lunenburg HS Student's Civics Class Project On Plastic Pollution

Emma Henry, a student at LPS, chose to do a project on recycling as part of her High School Civics Class.  Emma came to the conclusion that more education was needed on how people could recycle better and become part of the solution to reduce plastic pollution.  Please check out Emma's slideshow (PDF).

Related Documents