The Patagonia Recycling Task Force has scheduled its fourth monthly collection event for Saturday, March 27 from 10a.m. until noon, at which time it will again collect glass and only glass.
Town Manager Ron Robinson reported that the town saved about $100 in landfill tipping fees as a result of the Jan. 23 glass collection event. Thus, the task force is considering collecting glass more often than other recyclables given the savings in terms of both money and protection of the environment.
The task force collected an estimated half-ton of cardboard, as well as $240 in cash donations, on Feb. 27, behind the Patagonia Post Office. Forty-three vehicles brought enough cardboard to the event to fill two pickup trucks with trailers donated by Mike Sweedo and Mike Enright and Bob Brandt’s minivan. All of the cardboard was delivered to Nogales-based Green Planet Recycling where it is baled and sold to companies that reuse it.
Sonoita Hardware also brought a pickup truck load to the event which, at the task force’s request, it took directly to Green Planet.
Residents brought cardboard that was relatively free of contamination, a key factor in ensuring that recyclables actually get reused instead of ending up in the landfill. To help with that effort in future collection events, the task force handed out a printed guide to proper recycling developed by Donna Edmunds, based on Tucson’s recycling program.
Members of the task force continue to research all recycling options. For example, Edmonds did the leg work to line up cardboard recycling at Green Planet. Quentin Lewton, has done considerable research to find potential buyers of recyclable materials. Lewton recently traveled to Silver City, NM to get a first-hand look at that city’s multi-faceted recycling program which features both volunteer and commercial components, including curbside and drop-off recycling services as well as machines to pulverize glass and chip plastics. The task force has also received useful information from J.B. Shaw, ADEQ Recycling Coordinator, who often attends the task force’s meetings.
As the task force explores broad-scale recycling options, it will continue to offer single item collection events each month and provide instruction about proper recycling techniques.
The task force would like to expand its membership and is open to hearing suggestions from the community on what recycling ideas would work best. Individuals may email Brandt at Brantownb@gmail.com or call him at 703.615.8002 to provide input and/or volunteer.