Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Recycling plug

Tis winter and not much going on in our Wildscape. OK, OK, I confess....I'm not going outside much either. Plus, my macro lens isn't back from the repair shop (it's coming home Thursday). At any rate, I'm going to make a plug here for recycling, which we believe in and practice 100 percent.

Our weekly garbage amounts to just a wee bit in a plastic household trash bag. Every Monday, I always cringe when we set it out for the collection crew. I hate trash I hate trash, I mutter to myself on a regular basis. Because I do! I hate hate hate adding to our landfills. Native Americans from long ago would just grieve and cry over what we've done to their homelands! They respected and loved it all so much.

James says I'm like Neytiri, the main female character in the film, "Avatar."

"You're connected to everything," he tells me. "Sometimes TOO much."

Yes, I feel that link to nature deeply. Very deeply.

However, not everything can be recycled at our local center. So what do you do with old floppies? Video cassettes? Household batteries? Even an old toilet? (We bought a new water-saving toilet last week. It's AWESOME in action! Whoosh – only 1.6 gallons to flush!) Here are some green websites that helped me:

Greendisk.com Last February, I shipped a box of floppies, cassettes and an old computer drive to Green Disk. I paid $6.95 for a label, then $9 to ship the box. Sure, it cost me some bucks, but I felt better knowing it wasn't going in a landfill.

Earth911.com I've got a butter tub full of household batteries that my daughter left. I just CAN'T put them out for the trash! So I found Earth911 just now. Cool! Through this site, I found several companies that will accept batteries, like Green Disk does electronic stuff. Yes, I'll have to pay for their service. But that's OK!

To find battery recyclers, I clicked "Recycling 101," then "Hazardous," then "Single-use batteries."

1800recycling.com Another great resource that I recently discovered, thanks to Woman's Day magazine. This site also helps you locate places that accept recyclables and other wastes. 

Austin's Resource Recovery Center So what do you do with an old toilet? James called around last week and found a place in Austin that will take ours. Since I'm going to Austin next week on business anyway, I'll drop it off. I'm sure there are other places across the country that also accept old fixtures.

Bottom line: You CAN find places that will take and recycle nearly everything!


Corks A few weeks ago, I took a bagful of them to Spec's in Austin. They have a great recycling program: "Spec's has been working with Nomacorc, a cork recycling company, in an effort to collect corks that will in turn be used for 'up-sale' items. This keeps trash out of landfills and as an added bonus, 4 cents per cork will be donated to the Stehlin Foundation, a cancer research firm in Houston. To date, more than 300,000 corks have been recycled!"

Bottle caps Via Recyclebank, I linked to Earth911 and found the Recap Company! This Ohio-based company accepts bottle caps (soft drinks, spices, milk, mayonnaise, etc) and recycles them into cool ReCap Mats. Looks like we'll be starting a new collection box at the Pink House. 

VHS tapes Ship old VHS tapes and floppy discs to ACT, a nonprofit in Columbia, Missouri, that trains and employs disabled people. Alternative Community Training Inc., 2200 Burlington St., Columbia MO 65202; 800-359-4607. 

CD/DVDs Recycle them at Best Buy.

Cell phones Check where to dispose of your brand at digitaltips.org. Or drop off at Target and Best Buy.

Crayons Ship unwanted crayons (preferably still with labels attached) to Crayon Recycle Program, 2464 Downhill Dr. No 3, Steamboat Springs, CO 80487. For more info, visit crazycrayons.com or call 970-879-1966. 


NOTE: In January, I e-mailed Energizer batteries and asked about using rechargeable batteries in household clocks. Here's the company's reply:

Combining alkaline and manganese yields 1.5 volts. Combining nickel metal hydride yields 1.2 volts. Our regular alkaline cells are 1.5 volts. Our rechargeable nickel metal hydride batteries are 1.2 volts. Since all devices operate within a voltage range, you should still be able to use the rechargeable batteries. You will need to check with the device manufacturer to determine if 1.2 volts is acceptable.

Energizer Consumer Relations



D said...

We are recycler! cans, bottles, paper, wood... all have their box, and all our vegetable byproducts go into a compost pile for our garden, so we have little by way of "trash pickup". I am amazed that in this day and age that some areas of the country still don't do much recycling.

Sheryl, depending upon the part of the country, some might put that used commode out in the garden and plant something pretty and perhaps trailing. ;) a little garden whimsy is always good for the soul.

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers said...

Yes, I think we've got some of that garden whimsy in our own town. But here in our Wildscape?.....uh, no thank you! :-)

Thanks for visiting, Diana!

P.S. We compost all our veggie stuff too.

Debi said...

I save up "un"recyclable recyclables for the special drives our recycle center has (The Time Machine in Odessa). Twice a year they take the more unusual stuff like tires, appliances, electronics, etc.

We are really lucky to have this facility and I thank those innovators that made it happen.

Thank you for the info, Sheryl, and good thinking about doubling up on your trip to Austin!

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers said...

Ding dong it! Now I have to confess.....my husband was dismantling the old toilet yesterday and it broke into pieces. He advised me not to take it to Austin for fear that I'd cut myself up. So–alas–he took it to our city landfill. But I AM dropping off a bag of wine bottle corks at Spec's in Austin, which has a recycling program for them. And I DO plan to order that iRecycle Kit for batteries soon.

Thanks for recycling, Debi!!

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