Archive for August, 2012

Aloha, Recycling

August 31st, 2012 No comments
A new report out about recycling in Hawaii shows that recycling has gone up since the state started reimbursing people for returning beverage bottles in 2005.
Before the bottle deposit program was instituted, the landfill diversion rate was 41%, but it’s now  72%, according to That percentage includes other items diverted from landfills, but the beverage program clearly has contributed.
And Hawaiians are finding new uses for many types of recycled goods. Green waste is being turned into mulch, glass is being used to fill potholes and build new roads and paper fiber is being used by local packing companies as filler material. When materials can’t be recycled in Hawaii, they must be shipped at least 2,500 miles away to Asia or to the mainland.
According to the publication, “On Oahu, curbside pickup has made a huge difference in diverting trash away from the landfill. After pilot programs starting in 2007, islandwide curbside recycling and green-waste programs were in full operation in 2010 on Oahu. In its first full year, the program collected 18,000 tons of mixed recyclables and 53,000 tons of green waste, representing a 6 percent reduction in municipal solid waste going to Oahu’s landfill, according to Honolulu County’s recycling office.”
Last year, 52 percent of all recyclables were placed in Honolulu’s blue bins. Honolulu’s recycling office estimates the county can earn another $500,000 annually if it can increase the curbside recycling rate to 75 percent.
Local businesses have been making use of the recyclables. Menehune Magic takes green waste from Oahu’s green bin curbside pickup and produces compost for sale under the “Hawaiian Earth Products” label. Crushed glass is turned into “glassphalt” by Grace Pacific. Battery Bill’s reuses car batteries, EcoFeed Inc. uses food for compost and to Hawaii Mail Box Services reuses packing peanuts.
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Recycling Man

August 22nd, 2012 No comments
Green might not come to mind when one envisions the Nevada desert. But at the annual Burning Man festival, held in the Black Rock Desert, being green is highly encouraged.
The temporary community, which will run from Aug. 27 to Sept. 3 this year, includes a recycle camp. The mission of the camp is to get festival-goers to recycle as many aluminum cans as possible during the week, use reusable beverage containers as much as possible and practice the ‘leave no trace’ principle.  
“Volunteers meander through the city every day riding one of our new and improved & patented bicycle powered Recycling-trucks.  The trucks make it possible to collect 10 times as many cans as the old shopping cart version, in each trip,” Burning Man’s web site explains.
Burning Man’s recycle camp became an official theme camp at the festival in 1998. Since then, more than 800,000 cans have been recycled, with the proceeds going to the local school district.
The camp aims to teach those in attendance the “6 Noble Tenets of Waste Reduction & Recycling,” which, in the festival’s own words, are as follows:
1.The 6 R’s Respect — Rethink — Reduce — Reuse — Recycle — Restore!
2.Prepare! Leave sorry-ass packaging at home!
3.Never let it hit the ground!
4.Pack it in, pack it out! & Leave No Trace!
5.Separate! Sort your recyclables & trash before you discard them!
6.Create! Supposed “garbage” can be transformed into beautiful works of art!
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5 Ways To Teach Kids To Recycle

August 14th, 2012 No comments

Girls reusing a empty plastic water bottle

Teaching your children how to recycle can be a very worthwhile experience. Not only are you helping our environment, but you’re keeping the environment safe and healthy for their future.
Buying reusable products is the first step towards teaching children how to conserve. Instead of constantly buying them disposable lunch bag products or water bottles, buy them items such as steel bottles and plastic lunch bags that can be reused many times before needing to be thrown out. Kids are known to follow by example, so this could be a simple and money saving technique to show them how to conserve.

More often than not, families will use disposable paper napkins at the dinner table each night. By switching this with a personal washcloth for each family member, you can save money while also reducing your footprint on the environment. This is another simple method that can get your child used to be ecologically friendly.

By allowing kids to run the recycling program at home, you will be able to satisfy their want for being in charge while also teaching them how to recycle. Allow your children to recycle all of your plastic and glass used goods, and then you can even teach them about bottle redemption to really make their mind set on recycling. Taking your child to the bottle redemption machine each week will continue to motivate him to recycle while also giving him some extra money and keeping the environment clean.

Donating your children’s used and unwanted goods is mutually beneficial to both you and those in need. Make your child feel good about himself by donating to the poor and helping those in need. Besides the recycling aspect of this, its also just a nice gesture that many should do anyways.

Finally, trying to start a recycling program around the community or at your local school can be a huge way to get your kids to recycle. By instituting a recycling program in the school, all the children would want to be involved in it and it could have an excellent outcome. The school can also use motives in their program to motivate the children, such as rewarded them with a homework pass when a certain amount of items have been recycled. Starting the habit of recycling in school can carry over to your own home, eventually you will have your child teach you how to recycle!

Recycling can be a great way to keep the environment clean and safe for the future, while being an economically smart decision. By using these five tips to teach kids how to recycle, you can make a huge impact on the environment without having to put in much effort.

Kathleen Hubert is a blogger who writes on a variety of different sites.

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