Canister backpacking stoves are becoming so popular, but I have a concern about them that I can’t find much info about. Are the canisters refillable or recyclable? Or are we just creating more waste when we purchase these stoves in the quest of lightness?
Submitted by – Heidi Arnold, Seattle, WA
While stove canisters are not refillable (yet, anyway!), they are recyclable, though most people still don’t know it. They’re made of steel and can be recycled with your beer cans and crumpled tin foil. Different regions have different rules about how to recycle them (call your Public Works department to find out), but I happen to know the scoop in Seattle because we covered it in the magazine (“How to Recycle Spent Fuel Canisters” ). All you have to do is burn off all the fuel, mark the canister “USED” using a Sharpie marker or a sticker, and toss it in your recycle bin. In some cities you have to puncture or crush the canister, so consider yourself lucky!