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Thoughts on recycling

Letter to the Editor


I have a few thoughts on recycling in the area. One thought is that if it’s too expensive then we don’t need every individual household to have its own recycle can, which would necessitate a truck to drive up and down every street picking up the recycling. It would save money to have centralized recycling dumpsters: a dumpster for glass, one for plastic, cardboard, and whatever else. Usually it’s one giant dumpster with the various sections. This way individuals who care about recycling and helping the environment can bring their recycling items to this local spot and drop them in the dumpster, and then a truck would only have to come pick it up at this one location.

The Earth is highly polluted, and even if our community totals only around 3,000 people, if those 3,000 people recycle one item each per week, that would be 150,000 items in a year… 150,000 items not being dumped in a landfill or dumped in the oceans. Now imagine if each citizen recycled five items a week. Or 10.

I lived in Thurston county briefly, where they’ve banned plastic grocery bags. This required people to either buy paper bags at 5 cents each, or bring in their own tote bags, which took some getting used to, but it saves millions of silly bags from being thrown away and only requires a little effort to bring in your own bags. Coming from a place that is very conscious of environmental issues, and willing to do small efforts towards helping the environment, it’s embarrassing that my community has to be dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century. People are typically shocked when they learn we don’t have recycling here, and they’re right; we should be ashamed. We pride ourselves on our nature here, so why not do something to help nature?

On a related note, there are not smaller garbage cans available to me here. I pay $30 dollars a month, roughly $360 a year on garbage service, but I, as an individual, throwing away only a small amount of garbage, pay the same rate as a family of five throwing away several times as much. There should be an option to pay $15 dollars a month for a can half the size. That or allow me the option to not have garbage service, and take my garbage to the dump myself. Either option would save me 100s of dollars a year, and are options available in other communities.

Jacob Wagner

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