As a brief followup, I decided to find out what our two premier malls do in terms of recycling.
I first spoke with Chapel Hills general manager David Moss, who says the mall does capture 44 percent of its total waste stream by recycling virtually all of its cardboard. But he acknowledges that there are no options in the food court for recycling aluminum cans, plastic bottles, paper products and the like. Moss says he is working on incorporating recycling in the mall, but that it wouldn't likely happen any earlier than around the turn of the year.
Next, I exchanged e-mail correspondence with Victoria Harley, general manager at the Citadel Mall. Harley had the following to say:
The mall recycles all cardboard from all tenants as a mandatory program. The tenants have the option of also participating in the recycling of glass, plastic and paper. Additionally, we recycle grease from the food tenants ... We have several compactors for the recycling of cardboard in our service courts. We also have dumpsters for single stream recycling in all service courts. These are used by the tenants.
So, do with that what you will. If you decide to pocket your empty can or bottle at Chapel Hills to recycle at home, somewhere in the world a tree-hugger will smile.