GreenYes Digest V97 #61

GreenYes Mailing List and Newsgroup (
Fri, 22 Jan 1999 16:58:28 -0500

GreenYes Digest Fri, 21 Mar 97 Volume 97 : Issue 61

Today's Topics:
Georgia Bottle Bill Action report
help! hhw landfills question
Invitation from Tachi Kiuchi, Ceo Mitsubishi Electric
Landfill overflow causes- nonrecyclable plastic & junk mail
Marketing Bloopers
Reply to Helen Spiegelman
Request for Comments on draft Manhattan Waste Prevention recommendations (fwd)

Send Replies or notes for publication to: <greenyes@UCSD.Edu>
Send subscription requests to: <greenyes-Digest-Request@UCSD.Edu>
Problems you can't solve otherwise to

Date: Fri, 21 Mar 97 01:08:13 PST

Dear recyclers,

Below is a letter that was sent from the Grasssroots Recycling
Network steering committee to Coca-Cola CEO Robert Goizueta.
It requests that Coke take voluntary actions to ensure maximum
recycling of their product packaging waste (as they did in years
past) and to start using recovered plastic in their plastic bottles in
the U.S. (as they do in other countries). We have requested a
reply by March 26th.

Before that date we would like as many groups and organizations
as possible to sign on with us. Please lend your organization's
support and notify Lance King, GRN*s campaign coordinator, at; fax 916-448-3207; or tel 916-492-2924.

Feel free to pass this letter around. Help bring product
stewardship to America*s most admired company
(per recent Fortune magazine).

Many thanks,
Bill Sheehan


March 19, 1997

Mr. Roberto C. Goizueta
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
The Coca-Cola Company
One Coca-Cola Plaza
Atlanta, Georgia 30313
Tel: 404-676-4701 (secy)
Fax: 404-676-7711

Dear Mr. Goizueta:

We are writing you on behalf of the Grassroots Recycling
Network to ask that the Coca-Cola Company take immediate
voluntary steps to reduce packaging waste from your used
beverage containers. The Grassroots Recycling Network brings
together recycling advocates, environmentalists, economic
development groups, businesses, non-profit organizations and
other community-based activists working to reduce waste and
develop an environmentally sustainable economy. It is our belief
that industry and community can work together to solve the
problem of wasted resources to everyone's mutual benefit.

As the world's leading soft drink manufacturer, your company is
uniquely positioned to lead the industry in taking responsibility
for the billions of beverage containers presently littered or sent to
landfills each year. The time to act is now.

Taxpayers and local governments presently pay the cost for
disposal of your containers, which even by the most conservative
estimates costs tens of million of dollars annually. The costs
really amount to an "unfunded" garbage mandate paid by
financially strapped local governments and citizens who may not
even consume your product.

Even more significant are the hidden environmental, health and
energy costs associated with producing aluminum cans and glass
and plastic bottles from newly mined resources rather than from
recycled containers. For example, as you probably know, it takes
95 percent less energy to produce an aluminum can from recycled
cans than from newly mined and processed bauxite ore.

One area where the Coca-Cola Company promised voluntary
leadership is use of recycled plastic (PET) in your beverage
containers. In December 1990 you announced that you would
begin using recycled plastic in your bottles, but have not followed
through. The technology for cost-effective production of 100
percent recycled-content plastic bottles has been available in the
United States since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave
its approval in 1994 for food contact applications.

Coca-Cola's use of refillable beverage containers in other
countries demonstrates that even greater levels of resource
conservation and environmental protection can be achieved by
the world's most successful soft drink company without
sacrificing growth and profitability.

Clearly there is a need for a stable and reliable supply of
recovered bottles and cans to achieve the waste reduction and
environmental objectives our organizations are pursuing. As you
well know, financial incentives work.

Whether it is the old system of deposits that Coca-Cola and other
soft drink companies used decades ago or the bottle bill deposit
systems used by 10 states and some other nations, twice as many
beverage containers are recycled when consumers pay a deposit.
We are not calling for a government mandate or a packaging ban.
We are calling for voluntary, market-oriented solutions so that
Americans can recycle more and stop wasting precious resources.

Fundamentally, we are asking the Coca-Cola Company to return
to its roots, to take responsibility for your packaging waste, to
teach present and future generations that the values of thrift and
environmental protection serve our common objectives as
responsible citizens and consumers.

You might be wondering why we are singling out Coca-Cola.
You are the industry leader, with the best known product brand
name in the world. With nearly half of the United States market,
Coca-Cola's actions directly affect the entire market. Where you
lead, others will follow.

Americans, on average, consume more than 510 soft drinks and
servings of beer per year, but nationally only 38 percent of soft
drink and beer containers get recycled. More than 50 billion of
these single-serve, throwaway containers end up in landfills or
littered on beaches, playgrounds, country roads, and city streets.

The costs to society in wasted energy, resources, pollution, and
worker health and safety are enormous in the mining, processing,
manufacturing, transporting and disposing of containers made
from new resources rather than using recycled materials or
refillable containers. These hidden costs are being forced upon
society as a whole with every bottle or can used everyday.

On the positive side of the recycling and refillable container
balance sheet, recycling creates 10 times more net jobs on average
than landfills. Reuse of products and materials creates up to 50
times more jobs on average than landfills. Even more important,
the value added in recycling and reuse benefits communities by
keeping more dollars in jobs and businesses where the product is
We know the old arguments that soft drinks are a relatively small
amount of municipal solid waste and other containers could be
recycled also. But you know the pennies add up, whether it is the
cost of producing, transporting and disposing of your beverage
containers or the environmental costs of mining and refining
resources with all the associated pollution, energy, and worker
safety issues.

More than 100 million Americans recycle everyday. You can take
a position of corporate leadership by accepting responsibility for
wasteful practices that ultimately undermine our economy and
damage the environment. It is not fair to push the costs of landfill
disposal and litter clean-up on local governments and taxpayers.

We are asking Coca-Cola to take 4 voluntarily steps and request
the favor of a reply to this proposal by March 26, 1997:

(1) Begin using recycled PET plastic immediately in your plastic
bottles, a step promised by the Coca-Cola Company in 1990.
Whether you choose to use up to 100 percent recycled PET in
plastic bottles in selected markets or begin by using a smaller
percentage of recycled PET in all plastic bottles, Coca Cola can
immediately reduce the amount of plastic going to landfills or
incinerators by millions of pounds in 1997.

(2) Disclose in labels on containers the percentage of post-
consumer recycled material in each type of container - aluminum,
glass or plastic. The public has a right to know whether bottles
and cans being recycled are being recycled into new containers.
At present, consumers are misled because Coca Cola promised in
1990 to use recycled plastic in bottles but is in fact using no
recycled plastic in bottles sold in the United States.

(3) Re-establish a nationwide system of refillable containers
during the next 5 years. Coca Cola uses refillable containers in
some overseas markets and can return to this system in the
United States as well, which will provide many more jobs in
communities where the products are purchased and used.

(4) Commit to reinstate deposits on all containers sold in the
United States within 18 months -- like the system you operated
before. Manufacturers producing a product and consumers using
it need to take responsibility for the packaging costs of disposal in
landfills or incinerators and for the wasted resources. Deposits are
economic incentives that will double the rate of container
recycling, reduce litter, create local jobs and supply a steady
stream of materials for making new bottles and cans.

Voluntary cooperative action to reduce waste will be less
disruptive than protracted legislative battles or consumer
boycotts. We believe that recycling and reuse are keys to a healthy
economy and environment now and in the future. Both
community and business will prosper as recycling is proving

By assuming your responsibility as a manufacturer for packaging
waste, Coca-Cola can make a real difference. Without voluntary
leadership on your part, demands for government intervention by
organized citizen groups are likely to increase.

Thank you for your prompt consideration of our proposals. We
look forward to working with you to reduce waste and promote


Lance M. King
Campaign Coordinator, Grassroots Recycling Network
(Sacramento CA)
(916) 492-2924

For the Grassroots Recycling Network Steering Committee:

Rick Anthony, California Resource Recovery Association
(San Diego CA)
Resa Dimino, Non-Profit Recycling Council (New York NY)
Brenda Platt, Institute for Local Self-Reliance (Washington DC)
David Kirkpatrick, KirkWorks (Durham NC)
Neil Seldman, Ph.D., Institute for Local Self-Reliance
(Washington DC)
Bill Sheehan, Ph.D., Sierra Club National Waste Committee
(Athens GA)

Organizations joining in this request to date are:

Action for a Clean Environment (Homer GA)
Glynn Environmental Coalition (Brunswick GA)
Save Atlanta's Fragile Environment (Atlanta GA)
Georgia Sierra Club (Atlanta GA)
Californians Against Waste (Sacramento CA)
Natural Resources Defense Council (Los Angeles CA)
Planning and Conservation League (Sacramento CA)


Date: Thu, 20 Mar 97 01:41:00 PST
Subject: Georgia Bottle Bill Action report


Attempt to Shut Out Citizens by Switching Bottle Bill Hearing Time
Met with Silent Protest

A crowd turned out today -- in the rain -- for a press conference at the
Georgia capitol in support of the bottle bill (S.B. 191). About 40 folks
showed up including 6 middle school kids and people from Sierra
Club, Greenpeace, USPIRG, and EcoAction and other local
environmental and environmental justice groups. Senator James and
several others spoke on the capitol steps behind shopping carts full of
2,044 cans and bottles -- the number of soda and beer containers discarded
by a family of four in a year.

After the event on the steps, participants went inside and filed quietly
into the hearing room of the Senate Natural Resources Committee.
This committee had double crossed Sen. James and the citizens by
switching the hearing date at the last minute in a blatant attempt to
silence citizens who support the bottle bill. When Coke found out that
many citizens had been invited to come present their views at the
hearing scheduled for the regular Wednesday time, they persuaded the
committee chair to reschedule it at the last minute (on Monday
afternoon) to Tuesday (yesterday). Despite the fact that the bills's
author, Sen. James, would not be part of such chicanery, the committee
in a highly irregular move brought the bill up without the author
present and assigned it to subcommittee.

Channel 8 GPTV recorded the event on the steps and in the committee
hearing room today, where participants stood quietly, children in the
front, for ten minutes holding yellow and black signs saying *I support
the bottle bill.* The footage will be aired Friday, 7 PM.


Date: Thu, 20 Mar 1997 16:37:26 -0600
From: "St. Paul Energy Consortium" <>
Subject: help! hhw landfills question

Does anyone know anything about Class C, industrial waste landfills?

If a landfill is designed to be 20 above the ground when it is "done" does
it make a difference if its permit is later changed to be 60 feet? Will the
same liner/leachate collection system work? Are there other technical
concerns? Does it matter if the permit is changed to now include haz.
waste, not just industrial waste? Will it matter if incinerator ash is put
into one cell? Are there any other concerns about leaking or off-gassing
that are different for a industrial waste landfill versus a combined
industrial waste/haz. waste/incinerator ash landfill?

Thank you for any help you can give the residents of Dakota County, MN. We
have three weeks to get our information together.
"Saint Paul Neighborhood Energy Consortium" <>


Date: Thu, 20 Mar 1997 20:07:10 -0800 (PST)
From: Ann Schneider <>
Subject: Invitation from Tachi Kiuchi, Ceo Mitsubishi Electric

Is this the same Mitsubishi that is creating a salt operation in the gulf
of Mexico at the expense of the Gray Whales?



Date: Thu, 20 Mar 1997 20:19:40 -0800 (PST)
From: Ann Schneider <>
Subject: Landfill overflow causes- nonrecyclable plastic & junk mail

Why do we need single use platic sandwich bags. Why not use lunch boxes
with reusable tupperware or other permanent ware?

Ann Schneider
Repair, Resale and Reuse Council

On Wed, 19 Mar 1997, Wally

> Two major causes of overflowing Landfills are non- recyclable plastic &
junk mail.
> 1) When we go to Home Depot or similar store to buy anything from a small
light bulb to a thermostat, the package is often bigger than the item
(mostly plastic) with all the advertising and bar code. Plastics can be very
useful, especially the durable kind. But when thrown in the trash and not
recycled it is detrimental. I suggest banning all *disposable /
non-recyclable plastic* except for:
> Emergency medical use
> Sandwich bags for consumer use
> Protection of package contents in very humid areas.
> Violations could be heavily taxed or fined with all money collected to
defray landfill costs. Of course the package industry, advertising and
plastics industries would not be agreeable but...
> 2) Junk mail was not a problem before the desktop computer. These
computers have allowed anyone to develop a mailing list, print labels, and
produce their own advertising and magnifying the problem. Besides landfill
costs, fuel is used to transport this excess mail and more trees are cut for
> Junk mail might be defined as any mail without the persons name on it
(RESIDENT) and any more than 50 pieces of mail of the same type and from the
same organization mailed at the same time. Mail from an organization where
the recipient is a member and magazine subscriptions would be considered
solicited and not junk mail. Mail from nonprofit organizations should also
be exempt.
> I propose two possible solutions to reducing the junk mail to help pay
landfill costs and reduce the amount of junk mail.
> a Impose a heavy tax on junk mail with the money going to defray
landfill costs.
> or
> b Anyone receiving unsolicited mail could send a complaint and the
offending company would have a heavy fine. Which would go to defray landfill
> Personally I let the companies know that their junk mail is an invasion on
my privacy, causes slower delivery of valid mail, uses extra fuel to
transport it, and causes extra trees to be cut down. Therefore I on't want
their product.
> Wally


Date: Wed, 19 Mar 97 23:27:31 PST
Subject: Marketing Bloopers

[Forwarded from Anonymous]

Cracking an international market is a goal of most growing
corporations. It shouldn't be that hard, yet even the big
multi-nationals run into trouble because of language and
cultural differences. For example...

The name Coca-Cola in China was first rendered as
Ke-kou-ke-la. Unfortunately, the Coke company did not
discover until after thousands of signs had been printed that the
phrase means "bite the wax tadpole" or "female horse
stuffed with wax" depending on the dialect. Coke then researched
40,000 Chinese characters and found a close
phonetic equivalent, "ko-kou-ko-le," which can be loosely
translated as "happiness in the mouth."

In Taiwan, the translation of the Pepsi slogan "Come alive
with the Pepsi Generation" came out as "Pepsi will bring your
ancestors back from the dead."

Also in Chinese, the Kentucky Fried Chicken slogan "finger-lickin'
good" came out as "eat your fingers off."

When General Motors introduced the Chevy Nova in South
America, it was apparently unaware that "no va" means "it
won't go." After the company figured out why it wasn't
selling any cars, it renamed the car in its Spanish markets to the

Ford had a similar problem in Brazil when the Pinto flopped. The
company found out that Pinto was Brazilian slang for
"tiny male genitals". Ford pried all the nameplates off and
substituted Corcel, which means horse.

When Parker Pen marketed a ballpoint pen in Mexico, its
ads were supposed to say "It won't leak in your pocket and
embarrass you." However, the company mistakenly thought the spanish
word "embarazar" meant embarrass. Instead the ads said that "It wont
leak in your pocket and make you pregnant."

An American t-shirt maker in Miami printed shirts for the
spanish market which promoted the Pope's visit. Instead of the
desired "I Saw the Pope" in Spanish, the shirts proclaimed "I Saw the

Chicken-man Frank Perdue's slogan, "It takes a tough man to
make a tender chicken," got terribly mangled in another Spanish
translation. A photo of Perdue with one of his birds appeared on
billboards all over Mexico with a caption that explained "It takes a hard
man to make a chicken aroused."

Hunt-Wesson introduced its Big John products in French
Canada as Gros Jos before finding out that the phrase, in
slang, means "big breasts." In this case, however, the name
problem did not have a noticeable effect on sales.

Colgate introduced a toothpaste in France called Cue, the name
of a notorious porno mag.

In Italy, a campaign for Schweppes Tonic Water translated the
name into Schweppes Toilet Water.


Date: Thu, 20 Mar 97 22:44:20 PST
Subject: Reply to Helen Spiegelman


Dear Helen:
Thank you for your comments on the GRN. And thank you for visiting MN.
(Just an aside, as of two hours ago, we are not doing well on the oil and
oil filter recycling legislation, thanks mostly to the MN Pollution Control
Agency...what did you tell them!?) It sounds like you will bring a
refreshing perspective to the meeting in GA. I'm sorry I won't be there.

Please don't believe that Minnesotans don't like bottle bills. There are a
lot of recyclers here who support bottle bills, but there is such a stong
industry lobby against them, that after 20 years, some of us have given up.
I believe there is still hope, and we are watching GA carefully. If we can
get one state to be successful on this issue, I think other states will
follow. Industry folks know this, which is why they are going to work like
hell to keep it from happening in GA or any other state. This may be an
issue GRN wants to look at and decide if this is the type of issue they can
have an affect on, build a reputation for hard work on, and possibly win
this year or next. It may not be their issue and could peg them as a
"bottle bill" group, which I don't think would be in their best interest.
But you guys will decide that in GA and from comments on this list serve.

Mary Tkach
Recycling Program Director
Saint Paul Neighborhood Energy Consortium

>Two or three weeks ago, I was invited to Minnesota to spread the Stewardship
>Gospel. The folks there had got wind of our paint program over the Internet.
>There was real interest in both the Pollution Control Agency and the Office
>that does ENvironmental Education. (INterestingly, Minnesotans were totally
>uninterested in bottle bills, not recognizing them as the mother-of-all
>stewardship programs, but instead seeing them as competition for aluminum!)
>HHW is a great place to start, because god knows no local program is going
>to feel threatened if someone else deals with toxics.
>I prepared detailed information for the Minnesota talk about the 3
>Stewardship regs that are actually in place (paint, used oil, and
>pharmaceuticals) -- as well as the ongoing struggle with expansion of our
>"bottle bill". There has been some loss of momentum on stewardship in recent
>months (due to bizarre preoccupations of our socialist government: trying
>to sell Las Vegas style CASINOS as a government fund-raising scheme....).
>However, the government is still touting its stewardship policy in published
>documents from the Ministry of Environment, and future expansion is in the


Date: Thu, 20 Mar 1997 13:24:06 -0800 (PST)
From: Dave Wade <>
Subject: Request for Comments on draft Manhattan Waste Prevention
recommendations (fwd)

Here are some thoghtful comments that came to me instead of the original

Dave Wade

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Thu, 20 Mar 1997 08:11:06 -0500 (EST)
From: Jennifer M Hazen <>
Subject: Re: Request for Comments on draft Manhattan Waste Prevention
recommendations (fwd)

Perhaps there is a need to prioritize actions - maybe this has been done
already by date, but if so, I don't always agree with the order. Why
should a web-site be developed before ads in the NYTimes or other more
visible arenas like radio and local TV? Perhaps this is because of time
limitations, but I think that if the Mayor is opposed to 3Rs, he will want
to cut stuff - thow out some less importatant stuff, prioritize it low,
and let him axe it. But be sure to demonstrate the most important and
effective ones.

Also, remember to go for "big bang / little buck" Do you want to spend a
lot of energy and money on a bring your own bag program, or should you be
looking at working with C&D waste...which weighs more and takes up more
space and is more easily controllable? It seems to me that a lot of
people USE the bags from the store for their trash - they will not all
want to give that up! If you are going to work on BYOB, try to get a few
cents back at the cash register for not taking a bag - at least there is a
little motivation there.

For municipal solid waste/recycling, be conscious of the size and storage
space in the average NY residence. I haven't been in many, but my
grandmother's apartment in Queens is about chock full already... Perhaps
information on sorting in tight spaces, or a catalog of bin options at a
reduced price might be helpful to people who only have room for a trash

A suggestion - why not work with the phone company to post recycling
information? If it will be city-wide, this is a great medium where people
go to look for information and it is already delivered annually and to new
residents! (you may have to pay for the space, but I think it is worth

Best of luck with this...

:>o :>o :>o :>o :>o :>o :>o :>o

Jennifer Hazen (802) 443-5043
Environmental Coordinator (802) 443-5753 fax
Service Building
Middlebury College "all that glitters is not gold,
Middlebury, VT 05753 not all who wander are lost."

;>o ;>o ;>o ;>o ;>o ;>o ;>o ;>o


End of GreenYes Digest V97 #61