What a dedicated group of people can do
John Darling wrote a nice article for the Daily Tidings on October 15, 2011 about the beginning of something good. In Ashland, Oregon, at the annual Jackson County Plastic Round-up at least three good things happen, he wrote. “You get to dump a big load of stuff from your garage, you feel good about helping the planet, and you run into friends — or meet new ones — and get to chat with them.”
Jackson County is home of the Rouge Valley Earth Day, the Bear Creek Festival, Rouge Valley Bird Day, and the famous Oregon Shakespeare Festival. This last weekend, though, citizens of Jackson County dropped off their plastic (excluding PVC pipe, vinyl, rubber, polystyrene or plastic with metal in it) and with the help of six Jackson County Master Recyclers, who are trained by Recycling Partners, Recology Ashland Sanitary Service and others, had their plastic sorted, shipped and shredded for reuse.
“It feels really good to get rid of this stuff.”
The event only happens once a year. Therefore, gardners, hobbyists, and others have a chance to recycle plastic and be good stewards of the planet, although many already find reuses for the material. Many of them said it felt good. Last year, Jackson County residents rounded up about 25 tons of plastics.
Where does the plastic go? In this case, it goes to Portland. Our own Risa Buck, a Zero Waste Specialist at Recology Ashland Sanitary Service said that some of the plastic will be made into very durable railroad ties.
Risa emphasized that recyclers don’t make any money from the Round-up, but we do it “because it’s the right thing to do.”