Every holiday season I seek out new, innovative methods to share with you about better recycling tips or habits for the season. This year I will remind you of some of the basics, and then talk about some new ideas for 2019.

The Recycling Partnership, a national nonprofit that applies corporate funding from more than 30 major U.S. brands to improve recycling operations in cities and towns across the country, suggests these basic practices: buy sustainable items made from recycled material, use cloth shopping bags instead of plastic,
don’t wish cycle, rinse your containers, lights and tinsel are NOT recyclable, at parties make sure people know how to easily recycle by putting gout a recycling can. More ways include knowing where and what can be recycled and making sure you do it. All of our online shopping, if in boxes, can be recycled. Can
you imagine Amazon having an internal recycling program?

So, from an increasing recycling in your home program for the holiday, make sure you keep ‘recycling right’, saving your bottles and cans for the Recycle Rally continuing into next year and make a new resolution to add source reduction and food waste reduction to your next year’s goals. Our new class of green team members came out last week and we had over 70% of the 6th grade class in our meeting. How exciting that these kids, who were in first grade when Progress won first place in the Pepsico Recycle Rally, are at an age they can be leaders again. We will focus our educational efforts on understanding recycling and litter reduction as we introduce the new concepts of reduction.

Last week, Mr. Apple and I conducted a webinar with the Nebraska Recycling Council on School recycling for other officials across the state. In the webinar we discussed source reduction and the example in our schools of this new initiative is our water bottle refill stations. There are two at Prairie View and one in the high school. So far this year there have been over 75,000 refills instead of plastic water bottles recycled. This is a reduction of 75,000 that may not be a part of the Recycle
Rally, but it is a definitive method of measurement in reduction.
KKCB has been very fortunate over the 30 plus years of the organization to have dedicated, strong environmental stewards as board members. Our board, though mostly advisory enjoys a comfortable relationship with community leaders, students, and citizens. We work tirelessly to make sure we lead by example in litter reduction and recycling and many take their commitment
one step further.

One of those members, left us last week. We lost our beloved Harold ‘Pete’ Peterson to heaven. Pete personified the title of environmental steward. He recycled everything he could, including his dreaded soda cans. He also cared for his fellow man in his civil service responsibilities, his church activities and general all around goodness. I had the opportunity to work hand in hand with Pete in
the development of the community garden. In the process of deciding what we would plant, how it would be laid out and the overall garden design, Pete was  certain about one specific thing: he wanted a watermelon mound for one of his little buddies from church. It was built and Pete was happy… ah, if it could all be so easy. Rest in Peace, my friend, and enjoy your first Christmas with
Jesus. …And, Merry Christmas to everyone!

Categories: Environment

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