Expanded Polystyrene (commonly called Styrofoam, though the latter is a distinct product) is a very common and useful substance: it insulates nicely, absorbs shock well, can be formed into almost any shape, and remains sturdy and durable. EPS is also cheap to manufacture and will not biodegrade. These traits make EPS an excellent substance for insulating coffee cups, supporting car bumpers, and forming biological shipping containers or lightweight coolers for food service.
The same traits that make EPS so appealing to consumers, however, also create issues for post-consumer disposal. EPS products often are thrown in the trash because they cannot be included among readily recyclable, conventional plastics. Though there are many reasons why expanded polystyrene is not recyclable, the primary cause is often very simple: an EPS reuse or recycling program does not exist nearby.
But we do have recycling of Styrofoam in Dane County:
Clean Sweep; 7102 US-12
Recycling Drop off Site; 2373 S Fish Hatchery Road
City of Madison Streets Division;1501 W Badger Road
Reynolds Urethane Recycling; 2701 Progress Road
Future Foam; 2210 Parview Road
Verona City Recycling; 410 Investment Court
The next time you have some Styrofoam to get rid of, stop before throwing it in the trash, and drop it off at your nearest community recycling spot.