This past week as Barton County officials were considering the renewal of their Solid Waste Management Plan, local recycling efforts were discussed, and whether it is here at home or across the rest of the state, the story is the same. Kansas needs better recycling.
We need to keep as much material out of our landfills as we possibly can.
We need to have minimal packaging on the products we use and where possible, we need to recycle all that we can.
Of course that is going to mean some changes need to be made.
For instance, Solid Waste Director Mark Witt explained that in Barton County one of the challenges is the transportation of recycled material from here to a facility where that material can be process and put into the recycling stream.
Obviously, it does little good to recycle materials if they don’t get turned into another product.
That would just be another form of “trashing.”
Kansas needs better availability for recycling everything from paper to metals and plastic.
The state is, according to a recent Associated Press report, heading in the right direction.
“A recent survey shows the number of Kansans who recycle has jumped dramatically.
“The Kansas Department of Health and Environment released the results of its 2011 Community Recycling Survey last month. It found that the number of Kansans who recycle reached 85 percent in 2011, up from 65 percent the last time the survey was administered in 2005.”
According to the AP report, the survey, “also found that 81 percent of households recycle aluminum cans, 70 percent of households recycle plastics, 56 percent of households recycle newspapers, 45 percent of households recycle cardboard and 44 percent of households recycle other paper.”
But we need to not be fooled by any survey that is only targeting the larger metropolitan areas.
Kansas needs to address recycling in the rural areas or the state is going to end up with a lot of landfills all across the state that continue to stockpile materials that should be going into the recycling stream.
Witt and other state leaders are showing that the rural areas are willing to do their part, if the state will keep up.
— Chuck Smith