Today is the 25th Anniversary of National “America Recycles Day”
Published 2:18 pm Tuesday, November 15, 2022
Today (Nov. 15) marks the 25th Anniversary of National “America Recycles Day,” a national initiative to raise awareness and educate the public of the benefits of recycling.
The nationwide campaign has its roots right here in Texas! In 1994, two employees of the TCEQ (Texas Commission on Environment Quality) began a six-week campaign to boost recycling throughout Texas and provide information to the public on local programs.
From their efforts, the initiative grew nationwide to encompass 40 states by 1997; followed by President Bill Clinton signing a proclamation to make Nov. 15th America Recycles Day (AKA National Recycling Day).
Since that time, communities all over the Nation have embraced the principles of recycling: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. The advantages of these efforts are difficult to quantify, as data for recycling varies by state, but the benefits are self-evident. Reducing the amount of waste that goes into landfills is a win-win for residents, municipalities, and of course the environment.
Landfills are by their nature a scarce resource, and as the old saying goes “land, they aren’t making any more of it.” The process to commission a new landfill site or to expand an existing one, can take up to a decade to get approval from local and state authorities, and years to acquire the land and construct.
By diverting recyclable materials away from landfills, those timelines to expand can be extended, not to mention the benefits of recapturing reusable raw materials. With only 5 active municipal landfills in Southeast Texas, the need to conserve space has never been greater.
What can you do to help?
Recycling is in essence a perfect example of many small personal decisions adding up to make a big impact.
We throw away 1000’s of items a year into the trash, each of those items represents 1000’s of individual decisions. When we decide to recycle that cereal box, soda can or water bottle, we take pride in knowing that we have contributed to our community and the environment as a whole.
That seemingly small choice not only adds your sense of self, but it also serves as a positive example to the people in your life. Not through words or rhetoric, but with actions.
There are many things we can do to reduce our waste and spread the word. Start small. Look at the things that your household throws away everyday and make a commitment to set aside bottles, cans and cardboard.
Teach children the different types of recyclables and drive them by a landfill, to get a view (and smell) of what happens to trash once it leaves the house. Start a recycling campaign at your work, community organization, or church. Simply making people aware of a solution may prompt them to act.
Recyclops is a Utah-based Technology Startup that focuses on environmental sustainability by making it easier, convenient, and accessible to recycling with at-home curbside pickup. Recylops brings recycling to areas that don’t have city pickup, by connecting customers with pickup-drivers in an “Uber-styled” app.
Launched in Utah in 2014, the company has quickly grown to cover 30 different states and growing, and continues to attract the attention of major corporate investors, including the GLAD Corporation, Lerer Hippeau, and the Larry H Miller Company. In 2021, they enabled families to recycle over 6 Million pounds of waste, diverting it from landfills, and giving customers a sense of pride by “doing their part” to reduce the strain on their local landfills.
At home curbside pickup for as little as $12 per month. Serving all of Jefferson, Orange and Hardin Counties. Contact Brandon Hammock: firstname.lastname@example.org. Search Facebook and Instagram: @409recycle.