This man put a GPS tracker in his recycling. Here’s where it ended up.

A Del Mar man bought a GPS device, taped it to a plastic bottle and within a few hours, watched its journey to a landfill.

DEL MAR, Calif. — CBS 8 is Working For You to find out where our recyclables actually end up.

This comes after a CBS 8 viewer conducted an experiment and reached out to us with some alarming findings.

Kevin Grold says his plastic water bottle ended up at a landfill in Riverside.

Many of us, like Grold, are conscious of doing our part, by putting recyclables in the blue bin. Grold says it was disheartening to see.  

“It’s my way of appreciating nature and giving back, so if I leave it a little cleaner, then it’s a good thing,” Grold said, who lives in Del Mar.

Every Monday he brings his bins to the curb, recycling all that he can to help the environment. 

“I always make sure my recycling bin is just the way it should be, I follow all the rules. I put the things in the right place,” he said.

To make sure his recyclables were indeed being recycled, he got the idea to track his trash. 

He told us he bought a plastic GPS tracking device for only $8 online, taped it to a bottle and within a few hours, watched it go from Del Mar to a Recycling Center in Escondido. 

“I’m like ok cool, it’s where it should be. And then I keep watching it, and a few hours later, it keeps moving – farther and farther north and ends up in a landfill, in Riverside,” Grold said.

CBS 8 reached out to EDCO multiple times, starting Wednesday morning, but have not heard back. 

We did find on their website though, information about how careful we need to be when sorting because if there’s even minimal contamination – meaning garbage or green waste in your blue bin, it can ruin an entire load of recyclable material. 

Worldwide standards are increasing. Five years ago, China – where we send the majority of our recyclables, significantly reduced what they’re accepting, impacting the amount that’s able to be reused. 

EarthDay.org and I Love A Clean San Diego said only about 5% of plastics are recycled in the U.S.

“It’s a possibility one of their magnets, picked it up and pushed it out, or maybe it’s a possibility our recyclables aren’t ending up in the right place,” Grold said.

He’s now run several experiments, using both plastic and cardboard boxes.

“They ended up at Recycling Centers and then they got crunched and I don’t know where they went after that,” he added.

No matter what, Grold hopes this only inspires us all to take better care of our planet.

WATCH RELATED: La Mesa takes ‘first’ step to cut single-use plastic

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