GreenYes Digest V97 #282

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Fri, 22 Jan 1999 17:03:48 -0500

GreenYes Digest Fri, 21 Nov 97 Volume 97 : Issue 282

Today's Topics:
EPR for single use propane tanks
Hardwood pallets
Millions Get America Recycles Day message
Re: Regarding Sad Recycling :( -Reply (2 msgs)
Re: Regarding Sad Recycling :( -Reply -Reply (3 msgs)
Typo Correction to 11/20 1/2 Liter Coke Bottle Article

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Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 08:21:34 -0600 From: "John Reindl" <> Subject: EPR for single use propane tanks

Hi Alex -

Thanks for the note. Yes, Xerox (and others, including the Hg battery=20 and Ni-Cd battery folks) are leaders in EPR. Raymond Communications has=20 just put on a Take Back Conference on the East Coast, and next month,=20 the Europeans and North Americans are having a get-together to talk about=20 their different approaches and perhaps come to a consensus (or at least=20 get a little closer together) at a meeting in Ottawa. There's actually=20 a lot that is going on with EPR at the federal government level, but, very surprising to me, almost nothing is being written about this in=20 the standard solid waste and recycling magazines. We in the solid waste=20 side of things are being left out of the discussions because we haven't=20 been kept aware of what discussions and decisions are going on.


> From: CUYLER Alex D <> > To: John Reindl <> > Subject: RE: EPR for single use propane tanks > Date: Wed, 19 Nov 1997 15:53:00 -0800

> Hi John: I saw Paul Hawken last week at a Sustainable Business Symposium > sponsored by the University of Oregon. EPR was big on his list of things > that will change the economy to more sustainable. He indicated that in > Europe, sustainability is "the topic" on CEO's minds, and much of it is > due to EPR efforts such as the Green Dot program. He did mention in the > US that Xerox is a leader in the field, as they do not sell machines, > only lease them, so they are constantly dealing with disposal issues. > Any other EPR issues you are aware of? Wasn't there just a conference > somewhere that focused on EPR?-- Alex Cuyler, Recycling Specialist, City > of Eugene, OR. >=20 > ---------- > From: John Reindl > To: Rogers, John > Cc:; > Subject: RE: EPR for single use propane tanks > Date: Wednesday, November 19, 1997 2:45PM >=20 >=20 > The Thermostat Recycling Corporation (TRC) , a non-profit company set > up by thermostat manufacturers under the leadership of NEMA, is taking > over Honeywell's program to take back and recycle the mercury from > thermostats. >=20 > The program is now only operational in Minnesota (they have laws > banning mercury disposal in landfills and mercury in products) and is > expanding (perhaps yet this week) to Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, > Indiana, Ohio, Iowa, North Dakota and Florida. Their goal is to later > expand nationally. >=20 > For more information, I recommend contacting Ric Erdheim of TRC at > (703)841-3349. >=20 > I am seeing this concept of extended manufacturers' responsibility > taking hold for other products as well; recently, for example, I saw > articles of the computer industry and the propane tank industry also > expressing interest in setting up similar systems. >=20 > I hope this is helpful! >=20 > John >=20 >=20 >=20 > > John: > > > > Can you point me in the right direction for the mercury thermostat > > take back program. > > > > Thanks, > > John Rogers > > Recycling Coordinator > > La. Dept. Env. Quality > > > > > ---------- > > > From: John Reindl[] > > > Sent: Tuesday, November 11, 1997 10:05 AM > > > To: > > > Subject: EPR for single use propane tanks > > > > > > Dear List Members - > > > > > > One of my motivations for Extended Producers's Responsibility is the > > > hazard and cost of managing used single service propane tanks, such > as > > > > > > those that Coleman makes for camp stoves. > > > > > > Due to their hazardous nature, it is illegal for them to go to > > > landfills and refuse collection authorities don't want them in their > > > refuse trucks. Recyclers in my area also won't take them unless they > > > are punctured (a big safety no-no for the average citizen). And it > > > costs our local Clean Sweep program $9 to get rid of a tank, a tank > > > that only costs $2 at the local K-Mart. > > > > > > Attached is an article from a summer 1997 newsletter of the > Recycling > > > > > > Council of British Columbia. It appears that Coleman is willing to > > > take > > > back these containers if some logistical and legislative problems > can > > > be solved. I would like to encourage Coleman to build upon the > > > national > > > program of battery manufacturers to take back Nickel-Cadmium > > > batteries and a new program beginning this month by thermostat > > > manufactuers to take back mercury thermostats. For those of you > > > interested, I would urge that you contact The Coleman Company, PO >>> Box 2931, Wichita, KS 67201-2931, telephone (800)835-3278. > > > > > > Thank you, > > > > > > John Reindl, Recycling Manager > > > Dane County, WI > > > > > > =3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D > > > > > > PROPANE CYLINDERS > > > > > > Recoup's Materials Recycling Markets reports that the Recycling > > > Council > > > > > > of Ontario (RCO) and the Association of Municipal Recycling > > > Coordinators (AMRC) are working on promoting safe and economical > > > disposal of single-use propane cylinders. An AMRC survey of Ontario > > > provincial parks found that many face growing stockpiles of empty or > > > near-empty cylinders left behind by campers. Park officials say they > > > know that people want to do the right thing because when bins are > set > > > out for collection, they are soon overflowing, but camper donations > > > have not been enough to pay for the $1-2/cylinder disposal costs and > > > transportation. Campers who take their used cylinders home with > them > > > could dispose of them through their local (municipally-funded) HHW > > > collection programs, if they exist. John Hanson, RCO executive > > > director, believes that product stewardship is the answer. "A > better > > > solution is to encourage manufacturers to take an active role by > > > paying > > > the cost of container collection and recycling and by educating > > > consumers through disposal instructions on the product. The AMRC's > > > Cynthia Hyland suggests a container deposit system. Don Maclam, of > > > The Canadian Coleman Company Ltd., says that they would like the > > > cylinders back, but that there are issues to consider before any > > > retail-based take-back system could be brought in, such as > dangerous > > > goods transportation laws, high staff turnover at stores selling > > > their > > > products, and the fact that they are made in the U.S. In British > > > Columbia, such single-use containers end up in the garbage as there > > > are no other alternatives at present. The BC Recycling Hotline has > > > received over 400 calls about this problem item so far this year -- > > > 77 > > > in the month of July alone. > > > > > > Contact: John Hanson, RCO (416) 960-1025; Cynthia Hyland, AMRC > > > (519) 823-1990. > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > (608)267-1533 - fax > > > (608)267-8815 - phone > > > > > >=20 > > (608)267-1533 - fax > (608)267-8815 - phone >=20 (608)267-1533 - fax (608)267-8815 - phone


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 05:07:10 -0500 From: "Bill Sheehan" <> Subject: Hardwood pallets

Factoid of the day:

In 1992 almost half of all American hardwood lumber production=20 was used to make pallets for shipping. And according to the=20 industry, more than half of these pallets are used just once=20 and then discarded, ending up in landfills. Subsidized wood=20 products promote this type of waste. ...

If we are to be good stewards of public lands, we must=20 protect what remains of our national forests. One way to=20 do this is to create programs to insure maximum use of=20 recyclable materials.

Ending the logging subsidy makes good environmental and economic=20 sense and should be a high priority for a free-market economy.=20 That is why Representative Cynthia A. McKinney, a Georgia=20 Democrat, and I have introduced legislation to end logging on=20 public lands.

Source: NY Times Op-Ed, Wednesday, Nov. 19, 1997 "Too Many Trees

Are Falling" by James A. Leach

************************ Bill Sheehan Zero Waste Associates 268 Janice Drive Athens GA 30606 Tel & Fax 706-208-1416 ************************


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 14:58:38 +0400 From: Kevin Tuerff <> Subject: Millions Get America Recycles Day message

Success! That's what recycling coordinators and others all across the=20 country are calling the first America Recycles Day. Millions of=20 Americans got exposure to our message: "Keep Recycling Working: Buy=20 Recycled."

ON NOV. 15 YOU MAY HAVE MISSED: =80 In Kansas City, Green Elvis performed at recycling centers; =80 In Philadelphia, nine Home Depot stores and BFI collected used=20 construction material for donation to Habitat for Humanity; =80 In Texas, 19 cities collected used motor oil with Safety-Kleen and=20 the Recycling Coalition of Texas distributed more than 12,000 free oil=20 recycling containers; =80 In Sarasota, FL a skydiver dropped into a crowd of 1,000 visiting a=20 Buy Recycled event at Florida House. =80 In Washington, DC a fantastic rally was held with several federal=20 agencies featuring the EPA Men's Chorus and a Dixieland Band, and many=20 agencies hung enormous banners promoting ARD on their building. =80 Approximately 25,000 pledges came in over the Internet from all 50=20 states, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands--even one from USS=20 Fitzgerald at sea! The total number of pledges entered in the=20 "American Green Dream House" contest will be announced at the Dec. 15=20 drawing.

Bad weather was indeed a factor for events in some states, notsomuch=20 for others. (Minnesota had a packed event at the Mall of America).=20 America Recycles Day organizers have agreed to discuss the idea of=20 moving the date for 1998, however it's difficult to find a date that=20 meets these criteria: =80 In the fall, opposite Earth Day, =80 Enough time for schools to organize events, and =80 Avoiding the swell of media coverage for big political campaigns.=20 For right now, the date remains Nov. 15, 1998.=20

MEDIA HIGHLIGHTS Final results won't be available until January, but here's just a=20 snapshot of the media coverage America Recycles Day received:

=80 Hundreds of great newspaper articles were published across America,=20 including ones by Associated Press, Washington Post, Gannett News=20 Wire, and many more; a front-page =B3Snapshot=B2 and Union Camp=B9s =B3Great= =20 White=B2 full page ad ran in USA Today; and the Miami Herald and other=20 papers published an op-ed by Kathleen McGinty, chair of the White=20 Houce Council on Environmental Quality. =80 According to Video Monitoring Service, which monitors TV news in the=20 top 100 of 211 markets, ARD was featured Nov. 14-17 in 18 cities=20 including Los Angeles, Boston, Houston, Denver, Pittsburgh, Denver and=20 Phoenix. Participating states reported other good TV news coverage. =80 Thanks to USPS, Charlie Bravo and Fran McPoland conducted a =B3radio=20 tour=B2 to local and national radio news outlets like CNN, UPI, NBC and=20 top news stations in Boston, Houston Pittsburgh, reaching an estimated=20 audience of more than 8 million listeners. =80 The Today Show recognized ARD Thursday when Katie Couric met SC=20 Johnson=B9s Pledge Can mascot holding an ARD pledge card on their famous=20 studio sidewalk. =80 ABC News Online ( published an article featuring the=20 =B3American Green Dream House=B2 Friday, with a special click-and-see=20 feature enabling readers to view the recycled content and the national=20 recycling rate of each material used in the building of the house. =80 The Ad Council=B9s (EDF/EPA) TV and radio spots tagged with the ARD=20 logo have been running heavily in several states in the last two=20 weeks, and were seen on CNN and the Discovery Channel.

As Bela Lagosi once said, "There's no such thing as bad publicity." =20 Several detractors of ARD have surfaced recently, a sure sign of our=20 success. Regarding the (goofy) Forbes article mentioned on "greenyes"=20 I wanted to share a copy of the letter to the editor written and=20 submitted last week by our national co-chairs Bill Heenan and Fran=20 McPoland. See below:


November 12, 1997

Letter to the Editor Editorial Room Forbes Magazine 60 Fifth Avenue New York, NY 10011-8802

Dear Editor:

Why did 48 states, two U.S. territories and more than 100=20 businesses, civicand trade associations choose to celebrate America=20 Recycles Day on Saturday,November 15? Unlike the skeptics who=20 continue to question the viability of recycling (Why Recycling Is=20 Garbage, November 17, 1997), these millions of Americans recognize the=20 economic and environmental benefits of a maturing industry. =20

The top 10 of those reasons include:

10. The more than 130 million Americans with access to the 7,300+=20 curbside recycling programs throughout this country have found it's=20 not that difficult to separate their waste.

9. Recycling only begins by placing the bin at the curbside or=20 dropping the bag at the collection center. Consumers need to purchase=20 products and packaging made with recycled content. And, according to=20 the National Recycling Coalition, 89% of those surveyed say they want=20 to buy more recycled content products.

8. In some cases, recycling helps the community bottom line. Ann=20 Arbor, Michigan saw it's recycling rate soar from 16 percent in 1989=20 to 53 percent in 1996, while the average household's municipal solid=20 waste costs dropped from $65 per year, to $46 per year.

7. Some industries need time to develop the infrastructure for=20 using recycled content in the manufacturing process. Over the last=20 several decades, for example, the steel industry has advanced its=20 technologies to the point where it is impossible to make new steel in=20 this country without using recycled steel.

6. Buying recycled is easy. There are thousands of recycled=20 content products on the market today - everything from paper towels=20 and automobiles to motor oil and kids' snowsuits. In fact, McDonald's=20 Corporation recently announced it has spent more than $2 billion on=20 recycled content products and packaging.

5. Recycling creates jobs. There are more than 103,000 people in=20 the northeast alone employed by processing and manufacturing=20 facilities related to recycling, according to the Northeast Recycling=20 Council.

4. Yes, there is still lots of landfill space available. =20 However, the fact that we are recycling nearly 27% of our waste in=20 America can be attributed to our lessening dependence on landfilling=20 waste. In fact, the number of municipal solid waste landfills in=20 America has decreased form approximately 8,000 in 1988 to 3,197 in=20 1995.

3. Recycling saves energy. In fact, America's annual recycling=20 efforts save the equivalent energy to electrically power the entire=20 country for more than three months.

2. An estimated two million Americans have made a pledge to=20 increase their recycling and buying recycled efforts.

And the number one reason:

Since consumers receive most of their information about the=20 environment from the media, initiatives such as America Recycles Day=20 provide an opportunity to create "publicity events." In this case,=20 the more than 3,000 events planned across the country will educate=20 both consumers and the media about the importance of recycling to the=20 development of our sustainable future.


Bill Heenan Fran McPoland Co-Chair Co-Chair America Recycles Day America Recycles Day

I'm amazed at how much we accomplished in less than one year. Special=20 thanks go to all of our "EVIL GREENWASHING" sponsors, executive=20 committee, state and local event organizers and steering committee.:) =20 America Recycles Day will hopefully get bigger and better next year. =20 We hope you'll join us.

Best Regards, Kevin Tuerff National Director America Recycles Day


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 11:41:02 -0500 From: Helen Wertel <> Subject: Re: Regarding Sad Recycling :( -Reply

Pinellas County and its cities did not collect telephone books last year. For two years prior we did because there was a market. GTE (our telephone company) doesn't really help us in this effort as BellSouth has in other areas of Florida. Until we can find a viable market telephone books will not be recycled.

Also, i forgot the other day to mention that we recycle steel at 98% through the resource recovery plant.

Have a good day. Helen=20


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 12:22:47 -0500 (EST) From: Greg Smith <> Subject: Re: Regarding Sad Recycling :( -Reply


Did you mean that there was no mill capacity for your phone books, or that the comparative incremental cost of recycling them v. burning them in a local incinerator worked out in favor of the incinerator? Who makes the call in Pinellas County?

Greg Smith

|| Internet:


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 14:20:50 -0500 From: Helen Wertel <> Subject: Re: Regarding Sad Recycling :( -Reply -Reply

In Pinellas County each individual city/town/incorporated area (we have 24) makes the call on phone books. The county ( unincorporated) prefers that the books are not collected because the cost of recycling is much higher than burning (remember that the BTU value of phone books is good). In previous years we had a insulation company that would take phone books ( in lieu of newspaper) but theu no longer do. The cost of shipping to a mill is extremely high. They , too, in the past used phone books in lieu of newspaper.

Each year my City (Largo) weighs the pros and cons of telephone book recycling to determine if we will collect them. Much discussin occurs before a decision is made. Telephone books will not be distributed in our area until next spring. Helen


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 15:37:30 -0500 (EST) From: Greg Smith <> Subject: Re: Regarding Sad Recycling :( -Reply -Reply


One other concern about your area's on and off approach to telephone book recycling. Programs work best and require less public education when residents and businesses can count on consistency.

Greg Smith || Internet:


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 15:35:47 -0500 (EST) From: Greg Smith <> Subject: Re: Regarding Sad Recycling :( -Reply -Reply


I'd like to see the data on the comparative cost of burning phone books v. recycling them. I've also never seen anyone break out the cost of burning high BTU material v. general MSW. Here in Montgomery County, MD our cost to burn is over $100 per ton. I've never heard of anyone having to pay that much to have someone take their phone books. Unless your recycling collection costs are overwhelming, I don't see how it could cost less to burn than recycle.

That's why I asked about the incremental cost of burning v. recycling. It probably only "makes sense" to burn if your stuck with relatively fixed disposal costs regardless of how much you burn, as we are, or if there is absolutely no market for your recyclables. As we predicted they would, some of our local officials are portraying expanded recycling as an add-on cost, rather than fulfillment of a pledge they had allegedly made to citizens. The consultants' numbers here were badly off.

What's the annual tonnage burned in your incinerators v. their design capacity and the consultants' projections?

Greg Smith || Internet:


Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 12:37:43 -0600 From: RecycleWorlds <> Subject: Typo Correction to 11/20 1/2 Liter Coke Bottle Article

As most have no doubt observed, my typing is abominable. Yesterday's =3D excerpt from Plastic News about the new 1/2 liter Coke bottle converted =3D metric's one half liter to 19.9 ounces. That should have read 16.9 =3D ounces. Sorry about that.



End of GreenYes Digest V97 #282 ******************************