Wood you cut it out?

Billions of trees are cut down each year, and despite their many benefits, millions of tons of wood end up in landfills. But with Rubicon, you can implement a cost-efficient and simple recycling solution. We work with municipalities and all industries to find new uses for your waste. Together, we can create energy, reuse products, and protect our forests.

Frequently asked questions about wood recycling

Wood can so easily transform into new products. Reclaimed wood can be part of a new homeowner’s project. Cities can use wood for pathways, mulch, or fuel. Even animals benefit, as wood can be used in cat litter or bedding. Recycling your wood not only has environmental benefits, but it also cuts down on costs. It’s often cheaper to send your waste to a biomass-to-energy producer or processing plant rather than a landfill. Federal and state tax credits add to the recycling incentive.

Not quite. While you can often mix your paper with other recyclables in your bin, that’s not true for wood. Every city has a different requirement for handling wood waste, which is where Rubicon can help. You don’t need to think about whether your wood should be treated as yard waste, a source for fuel, or should be sold for construction projects. Rubicon will analyze your waste stream and determine the best methods for handling recyclables—always keeping your bottom line in mind.

The term “urban wood waste” pops up in a lot of places, but it has different meanings depending on context. Arborists define the term as material from pruning or tree removal operations. Others consider it a definition for construction and demolition debris. And many researchers would describe the term as waste from wood products, municipal trees, or a combination of the two.

There are two types of wood. Untreated wood and treated/painted wood.

Untreated wood can be used for a number of things, like compost, mulch or toys. And because it hasn’t been affected by chemicals, it’s safe and easy to burn for fuel. Untreated wood, like some wood pallets, is the easiest to recycle because it often isn’t contaminated by things like:

• Nails and metal fixings
• Bindings and glues
• Paint or surface coatings like polyurethane
• Plastics
• Glass
• Grit

Treated or painted wood comes with its own set of difficulties. Using it for compost or fuel could release toxic chemical compounds into the air and soil, which is why many often toss this kind of wood in the landfill. With Rubicon, you can find the right processors or producers to recycle or reuse your contaminated wood.

It absolutely can be. If you’re a carpenter or manufacturer, the moisture content (MC) of your wood makes a significant difference. If the MC is too high, excessive shrinkage could occur and cause gaps or cracks in the wood. MC also makes an impact on the dollar value of the wood per pound—100 pounds of virgin wood with 60% MC is far less wood (therefore, more expensive) than a recycled wood with a lower MC of 20%.

with Rubicon

  • Identify waste stream opportunities

    We’ll find buried savings in your trash by taking a close look at what you could divert to recycling.

  • Find the right container

    Rubicon makes it easy to get started by finding the right containers and system that works for you.

  • Sort out the savings

    We work to find new uses for your materials, not only helping you divert wood waste away from the landfill, but also saving your business money.

More materials

heavy and dense waste

Concrete and Drywall

With heavy and dense waste like concrete, you’re looking at some hefty hauls. Rubicon can help you find savings by implementing a waste and recycling program tailored to your business.


Billions of trees are cut down each year, and despite their many benefits, millions of tons of wood end up in landfills.


Almost every kind of metal can be recycled endlessly, which means an endless amount of opportunities for your business.