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Old 04-22-2010, 12:46 PM   #1
Steven Lyle Jordan
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Happy Earth Day!

I hope all of you good boys and girls are reducing, reusing and recycling, eating less, going green, and looking for new and fun ways to make your Mother Earth happy!

Are some of you doing something special, something extra-green, to commemorate Earth Day? Maybe starting something that will be an ongoing effort on your part? Let us in on it!

And yes, this is the lounge... so feel free to trash Earth Day as well... just keep it civil, willya? And maybe we'll get a nice dialog going.
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Old 04-22-2010, 01:17 PM   #2
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Nothing special as such, we are going to whip out the garden hose though and figure out where to put the flower beds over the weekend.
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Old 04-22-2010, 01:23 PM   #3
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I will pick up extra poops at the puppy park!

(and I have more gardening to do)
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Old 04-22-2010, 02:22 PM   #4
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Thank you, Steve. I'll be renewing my membership to the Sierra Club and making donations to Environmental Defense and the Nature Conservancy as I usually do this time of year. Nothing else notable. I am, however, planning to have an arm band made like I used to wear 40 years ago with this on it so I can wear to work for my last few days before I retire. But that's still a few years away.

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Old 04-22-2010, 02:55 PM   #5
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The city trash folk FINALLY figured out that if they gave folk full-sized carts instead of teeny little bins to put their recyclables into, why people might recycle more stuff rather than throw it into the trash! Now we fill our recycle cart every week, while our trash (to landfill) cart has maybe 1 bag in it.
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Old 04-22-2010, 03:25 PM   #6
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I have a question about recycling. Our curb-side recycling used to be limited to metal cans, #1 (PET) and #2 (HDPE) plastic, and clean, dry newspaper. Glass and the other plastics were too expensive to recycle. Last year, they changed and now they accept literally all kinds of plastic and all kinds of paper products (but still no glass). What has changed?

Related to this question is the fact that I heard recently that roughly half of all the shipping containers headed back to China from the U.S. are now filled with our trash that is headed for recycling. If this waste is really headed for recycling and they've just gotten better at it recently, then that's great. But I'd like to know that we're not just shipping our trash to other countries for incineration or landfilling abroad. That would be very bad and has been done before. Anyone have any information?
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Old 04-22-2010, 03:31 PM   #7
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So today is Earth Day? Is that where the planet got the name (from the holiday)?
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Old 04-22-2010, 03:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vivaldirules View Post
I have a question about recycling. Our curb-side recycling used to be limited to metal cans, #1 (PET) and #2 (HDPE) plastic, and clean, dry newspaper. Glass and the other plastics were too expensive to recycle. Last year, they changed and now they accept literally all kinds of plastic and all kinds of paper products (but still no glass). What has changed?

Related to this question is the fact that I heard recently that roughly half of all the shipping containers headed back to China from the U.S. are now filled with our trash that is headed for recycling. If this waste is really headed for recycling and they've just gotten better at it recently, then that's great. But I'd like to know that we're not just shipping our trash to other countries for incineration or landfilling abroad. That would be very bad and has been done before. Anyone have any information?
National Geographic had a really good article about recycling and the way different countries purchased the different kinds of waste and treated it. interestingly enough, these numbers completely skew tracking which countries are the most efficient at recycling their own waste... the accquired waste is added into the totals.

as far as what is taken and what isn't, it all depends on the local contractor that takes the recycling. for years we could curbside some stuff, and then other things which seemed perfectly logical to recycle had to be taken elsewhere.
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Old 04-22-2010, 03:34 PM   #9
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So today is Earth Day? Is that where the planet got the name (from the holiday)?
Isn't it like all those famous people that were born on those holidays, isn't it the earths birthday? 6,000 years old today right
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Old 04-22-2010, 04:19 PM   #10
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Isn't it like all those famous people that were born on those holidays, isn't it the earths birthday? 6,000 years old today right
That is an interesting coincidence, isn't it?
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Old 04-22-2010, 04:41 PM   #11
Steven Lyle Jordan
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Quote:
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I have a question about recycling. Our curb-side recycling used to be limited to metal cans, #1 (PET) and #2 (HDPE) plastic, and clean, dry newspaper. Glass and the other plastics were too expensive to recycle. Last year, they changed and now they accept literally all kinds of plastic and all kinds of paper products (but still no glass). What has changed?
You'd have to ask your local government that. Could be as simple as a local contractor that now offers a new service... or was forced to by your local govt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vivaldirules View Post
Related to this question is the fact that I heard recently that roughly half of all the shipping containers headed back to China from the U.S. are now filled with our trash that is headed for recycling. If this waste is really headed for recycling and they've just gotten better at it recently, then that's great. But I'd like to know that we're not just shipping our trash to other countries for incineration or landfilling abroad. That would be very bad and has been done before. Anyone have any information?
Quite a bit is landfilled... the US pays handsomely to take our trash off our hands.

A lot of the rest is landfilled, but in places where individuals will go in and manually sift through the trash for recyclable material, to make some money. Although this in itself is not so bad, recycle-wise, it unfortunately exposes them to toxic materials, few of them wear any protection (not even gloves), and as a result, a rise in health problems and birth defects has occurred in those areas.

Though I see no reason not to send trash to another location/country to be recycled, the process should be done safely and efficiently, and in many places it's not. We as a people should do what we can to pressure our govt, and others, to handle recyclable trash in a safer manner, for health concerns at least.
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Old 04-22-2010, 05:34 PM   #12
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Okay, clearly I need to check into this further. If we've been tossing all of our "almost impossible to recycle" #7 (PV) plastic containers into a "recycle" bin just so they can be shipped to China to be stuck in a landfill, then I'm going to be irate. I will report back here soon.
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Old 04-22-2010, 05:44 PM   #13
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At my home, we don't pay any notice of Earth day, but we constantly try to reduce our waste and energy consumption. So far we have reduced both by 20 % this year. Still a long way to go, but it's a start.

What really bugs me is that we generate waste that lasts far beyond our own lifetime. IMO if disposable diapers take 500 years to dissolve, then we clearly need to go back to cloth diapers etc.
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