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Front Page » March 12, 2009 » Carbon County News » Team green moves forward with area recycling matters
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Team green moves forward with area recycling matters

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Sun Advocate community editor

Team Green is growing, as community residents and officials gather in larger numbers every month to discuss the best ways to create a comprehensive recycling system in the Carbon County area.

March’s meeting, conducted Tuesday, was themed planning ventures as the group tackles a massive problem. They began phone conferencing with the Recycling Coalition of Utah, who supports the environmental effort throughout the state and helps organize recycling efforts for individual communities. The group agreed to join the coalition and begin attending their functions in order to better educate themselves about the challenges presented large scale recycling efforts. The Governors Office of Economic Development backs the coalition because of their ability to keep enviromental regulations satified while simultaniously allowing for newdevelopment.

According to association officials, certain statistics have the nation’s recycling at nearly 20 percent of their total waste, however, the association stipulated that those numbers can be inflated easily and do not accurately represent the actual numbers. In the same statistical review, Utah is listed as only recycling around 2 percent of their refuse, a number which is also in contention.

Currently assisting the group is local paper and aluminum recycling firm RJ Recycling who has been with the team from it’s inception and continues to coordinate both industrial and private pickups of recyclable materials.

“We are working on garnering the equipment needed to pick up different materials,” said an RJ representative. “But the machinery is expensive and we need to see a strong community effort in place to make the purchases possible.”

According to Carbon County Economic Development Director Delynn Fielding, the most important issue concerning the materials recycled is that the community keep the project economically feasible.

“This needs to be economical and economically viable,” he explained. “If we get ahead of ourselves and start putting labor and maintenance into this too early we are going to run into trouble. The places I have seen be successful with these kinds of ventures have had individuals doing the sorting on their own.”

Commissioner Bill Krompel, agreed with Fielding, stating that cost is the major factor stopping more recycling from going on at the county’s landfill.

“When we recycle used waste tires, federal environmental quality boards pay for the transportation needed to move those tires to sites on the Wasatch Front,” said the Carbon commissioner. “If we weren’t subsidized that recycling could not take place. Economics are vital to this issue.”

Taking that into consideration, the team moved on to discussion concerning the creation of a community point for recycling bins, versus having home owners look into purchasing their own small units that would be gathered up on days differing from their regular refuse pickup schedule.

To garner an even further understanding of the the waste situation in Carbon County, team officials contacted East Carbon Development Corporation official Jeff Green to schedule a tour of the east county waste disposal facility.

The team left the table with a great amount of research to be done. Recycling officials will determine the cost of community bins versus the cost of household containers as well as researching the logistics of how each system would be picked up.

Other team members are working on finding out just how much local interest there is in recycling and to what lengths the average citizen is willing to go in order to serve the cause.

“Ideally we are looking to go all the way with this,” said team chairperson Jeanne McEvoy. “Our goal is to significantly increase recycling in the area and create a local recycling center of our own. I realize that these are long term goals but I think our community is ready to make the changes necessary to help our environment.”

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March 12, 2009
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