Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Cape Cod Chronicle Column December 8, 2011


On the first day of Christmas…

1. Use Energy Saving Lights for Decorating House and Tree.80-90% less energy!

2. Set Out Separate Trash and Recycling Bins for Guests.Make it easy for them.

3. Compost Your Tree. Have it chipped up for mulch or compost, or purchase a living tree to plant later.

4. Gift CFL Bulbs. For the friend or family member who has everything.

5. Recycle Office Paper for Packing. Shredded paper makes great filler.

6. Send the Very Best with E-Mail . Send e-cards and spare the trees!

7. Microwaves Save Energy. Use microwave or pressure cooker whenever possible, cutting cooking time and saving energy.

8. Recycle Last Year's Cards for Stickers. Cut out images from last year's cards to create "to" and "from" stickers.

9. Gift Recipes, Dress-up Clothes and Other Recycled Products. A book of favorite recipes for the cook on your list or a box of dress-ups for young kids?

10. Go Organic. Choose organic foods for your holiday dinner. Easier on the environment and much tastier!

11. Re-Use Paper for Gift Wrap. Dressed up brown paper bags and newspaper make fine wrapping paper. Most people are more concerned with what's inside anyway.

12. Break Out the Good Stuff. Use metal flatware, real glasses and dishes, and cloth napkins and tablecloths. They look better, your guests will appreciate it, and you're not creating any waste!

…and a free-range turkey in a pear tree :-)

*with thanks to Farmers' Almanac.



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Cape Cod Chronicle Column November 24, 2011



Recycling can definitely help us fight global climate change, at the very least minimizing the rate of the change by:

*Reducing the extraction of virgin materials from the earth through mining and deforestation which deplete these precious resources and contribute substantially to pollution and greenhouse gases.

*Preserving plants and trees which reduce the accumulation of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide.

*Requiring less fossil fuel to be burned in the manufacturing process because processing recycled materials requires less energy.

*Diverting materials away from landfills and incinerators, thereby reducing pollution from these waste disposal methods.

*Saving community funds, hopefully for other earth-friendly goals.


Don't forget the Reduce and Reduce principles too, such as:

*Green driving practices like carpooling, minimal driving, limited idling and keeping your car in good shape.

*Conserving resources and energy at home and work, including switching off electrical appliances when not in use.

*Considering green holidays, eco-tourism, eco-friendly products and energy efficiency tips in your daily life.

*Adding to the plants and trees on earth by growing your own green garden, planting trees and contributing to forest conservation efforts.

*As a community, learning to tap cleaner and greener sources of energy such as solar power.

*Last but not least, helping to spread the message…

To Recycling and Beyond!!



Chatham's Board of Selectmen is appointing a Solid Waste Task Force

to study options for recycling and trash disposal

as a new SEMASS contract and much higher fees approach.

If you have relevant experience and interest in joining this Task Force

please call the Selectmen's office, 508-945-5105.

We need good, committed people!




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Cape Cod Chronicle Column November 10, 2011

How about making your Thanksgiving an eco-friendly tradition starting this year? Here are a few tips to help you capture the spirit of the original, "green" Thanksgiving. It's a perfect way to say thanks to our planet!
1. Reduce
Buy only as much as you need and choose products in recyclable packaging.
2. Reuse
Carry reusable bags when you shop. Use cloth napkins and real dinnerware and utensils which can be washed and reused.
3. Recycle
Recycle paper, plastic, glass and aluminum containers. (Chatham's Transfer Station now accepts all plastics except styrofoam!) If you don’t already have a compost bin, use your Thanksgiving fruit and vegetable trimmings to start one. The compost will enrich the soil in your garden next spring.
2. Buy Locally Grown Food When Possible
Buying locally grown food requires less fuel to reach store shelves and contributes more to your local economy.
3. Make Your Meal as Organic as Possible
Better for your health and the environment, organic farming produces higher yields, increases soil fertility, prevents erosion, and is more cost-effective for farmers.
4. Celebrate at Home If You Can
Thanksgiving weekend is one of heaviest for travel, and therefore emissions. Why not reduce global warming and skip that stressful holiday travel this year?

Special Thanks! to all the visitors, volunteers and donors to ChathamRecycles' 4th Annual Drop & Swap.
And Thanks! also to you, our readers and fellow recyclers!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column October 13 & 27: 4th Annual Drop & Swap

Friday, September 30, 2011

Cape Cod Chronicle Column September 29, 2011

It's Not Too Soon to Plan a Green Halloween!
Halloween is spooky by nature, but it doesn't have to be a scary time for the environment too.
A few simple tips...
1) Cloth shopping bags, or even pillowcases, make terrific alternatives to paper or plastic bags to collect treats.
Americans use more than 380 million plastic bags and 10 million paper bags every year. Plastic ends up as litter, kills thousands of marine mammals annually, and breaks down slowly into small particles that continue to pollute soil and water. During production, plastic bags require millions of gallons of fossil fuels; and paper bag production consumes more than 14 million trees annually in the U.S.
2) Instead of buying a costume that might be worn once, make your own costumes from old clothes and other items around the house. Or find inexpensive costume materials from thrift stores and yard sales. Your children might even enjoy trading Halloween costumes with friends to have something “new” and different to wear.

3) Give your visiting ghouls treats that treat the environment gently. There is a growing variety of eco-friendly candy. Choose treats with little or no non-recyclable packaging. Buy locally if possible to support the local economy and reduce fuel consumption and pollution associated with transportation. Or avoid candy altogether and give small gifts like colored pencils, crayons, small toys, stickers or other inexpensive items.

4) Instead of throwing organic Halloween decorations -- pumpkins, corn stalks, gourds, hale bays, etc. -- into the trash, remove non-organic trim and deposit in the compost area at the Transfer Station.

5) Living an eco-friendly lifestyle and reducing waste and pollution should be a daily event, not a special occasion. With a little thought, you can apply the strategies you use to have a green Halloween to the way you live every day!

Oh, and one last thing - what's a ghost's favorite fruit?
Happy Safe Green Halloween!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column September 15, 2011

Introducing "Cape Crusader" and Recycling Partner - Milley Trucking!
And we thought WE had been recycling for a long time. When Tim Milley's
great uncle started in the hauling business, the company immediately
began recycling - in 1928! Ashes for the garden, kitchen scraps for the
livestock, and eventually scrap metals in 1945 when Tim's father took over.
Recycling continued when Tim purchased the company in 1978 and expanded
in 1990 to include glass, tin cans, newspaper, cardboard, paper,
and plastic for his commercial customers.

The company also serves Chatham Public Schools and the three schools'
recycling programs.

In 2010 Milley began providing dual-stream recycling to his residential customers
via a separate truck operating on different days from the trash pick-ups.
Stream #1 is plastic, glass and metal; stream #2 is mixed fibers: paper and junk mail.

"Recycling is a very costly and labor intensive endeavor and I have been trying for more
than 20 years to make it feasible," says Milley. "Since 1990 we have recycled approximately
3,500 tons of material that never went to the Chatham Transfer Station."

To his current customers, Tim Milley says please make recyclables as clean as possible.
Dirty and/or food-laden items can contaminate a load and risk refusal by the purchaser.

We know it takes time, energy, money and extra manpower, and we salute Milley Trucking
for their commitment to recycling! In the end, it keeps many items from the waste stream;
saves natural resources used to manufacture brand new items; and eventually reduces
costly dumping fees for Milley Trucking and for the Town of Chatham.

Milley Trucking, another Cape Crusader!

Milley Trucking (508) 945-0725

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column September 1, 2011


A new school year means new stuff! Supplies, calculators, clothes, backpacks, etc. Consider these tips as you prepare:

School Supplies
• Many supplies are reusable. Reuse notebooks with paper left ; folders that are not too battered; and backpacks, binders and calculators.
• Several organizations accept donated supplies for schools around the world. If there are items you can't reuse yourself, consider donating.
• When buying new supplies, look for products - pencils, notebooks, folder and other paper products - that contain recycled content.
• As much as possible, purchase supplies in bulk and with minimal packaging. This keeps materials out of the waste stream.

Lunches and Snacks
• Instead of plastic or paper bags, use reusable cloth or plastic containers. Buy a reusable plastic or metal container for drinks, rather than single-use water bottles or juice boxes. This saves you money and reduces waste.

Clothing, Electronics and Other Supplies
•Last year's clothes, shoes, sporting goods and backpacks may no longer fit. If they're in good, usable condition, consider donating them to charitable organizations, keeping them out of the trash loop and helping those in need.
• If replacing computers, printers, calculators or other electronics, consider donating or recycling them. Many organizations will accept donations of working electronics, and the Chatham Transfer Station accepts e-waste for recycling, some for a small fee.
•Look into solar chargers for cell phones, etc.

•Back-to-school season is a great time to talk to kids and teachers about the importance of waste reduction and recycling. Talk to your child and teachers about how to reduce the amount of waste they create, reuse what they can and recycle the rest..and why this is important.

Happy 2011-2012 School Year!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column August 18, 2011

We've Got Some Good News…and Some Good News!

First, the good news:

You no longer have to stand at the Chatham Recycling Center looking back and forth from the bottle in your hand to one bin, then another, wondering all the while: "Is this a #1, #2, or a #3 through #7?? Oh great, I left my glasses in the car!"

Second, the reason for the first good news:

Plastics #1 through #7 no longer have to be separated!!

Many surveys show that 9 out of 10 people say they would recycle more if it was easier. Well, toss one more excuse in the dumpster because, as long as your plastic item has the universal recycling logo and a #l through #7, you are welcome to toss it in the bins marked "Plastics #1 - #7" at the Chatham Transfer Station's Recycling Center.

Just two minor requests please: rinse items to avoid bees and other critters;
and put caps in designated chutes.

More time for the beach now? You're welcome!


Cape Cod Chronicle Column August 4, 2011



    In some industries, recycling of widely used materials can sharply reduce the energy requirements for reprocessing. For example, increased use of paper recycling could also save enormous amounts of energy and help avoid increased deforestation in the world.
   Recycling offers even larger gains in the aluminum industry. The production of aluminum from bauxite ore is one of the most energy-intensive processes in the global economy. However, 95 percent of the energy can be eliminated by processing recycled aluminum instead of producing fresh quantities from bauxite. Yet vast quantities of aluminum are discarded annually.
   In the United States alone, more than 50 billion aluminum cans are thrown away each year - more than half of the 100 billion sold each year. The Container Recycling Institute reported that between 1990 and 2000, citizens of the United States wasted enough aluminum cans to "reproduce the world's entire commercial air fleet 25 times." Large quantities of aluminum are also discarded - instead of being recycled - in the form of appliances and other durable goods.
   When you add the 29 billion glass bottles and 7 billion higher density plastic bottles and jugs that are also thrown away each year instead of being recycled, it means that there are 9 aluminum, plastic, or glass containers thrown away every week on average by every man, woman and child in the United Stats. If they were routinely recycled instead, the energy saved in making new containers would equal the energy equivalent of 53.5 million barrels of imported crude oil - which would be the equivalent of eliminating all the gasoline used by two million cars."

-excerpts from Al Gore's "Our Choice," now an interactive e-book 

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column July 21, 2011

Household Hazardous Waste Collection
August 13, September 10, October 8, 9am - Noon
Harwich Transfer Station, 209 Queen Anne Rd.
Questions?  508-375-6699

Cape Cod Chronicle Column June 23, 2011


"Can I recycle this?…Where does that go?…Can anyone reuse these?…"

When it comes to recycling, there's no such thing as a silly question. Send yours to: info@chathamrecycles.com. Here are a few we hear often:

Q: Where do plastics #1 not in bottle or jar form go, like takeout food trays?
A: Plastics #3 thru 7 bin (don't ask). But no styrofoam please!

Q: Brown paper bags?
A: Corrugated Cardboard.

Q: Corrugated cardboard covered with colored paper okay?
A: Yes.

Q: Pizza boxes?
A: Corrugated Cardboard, as long as there's little or no oil, cheese or sauce inside. (no wax paper liner please)

Q: Used aluminum foil?
A: Aluminum and Tin Cans bin (relatively clean )

Q: Cat litter?
A: Trash, but consider the more eco-friendly Feline Pine or Trader Joe's Pine Cat Litter (some claim it can be mulch after solids removed)

Q: Motor oil container?
A: Trash (due to inevitable remaining oil)

Q: Metal bottle caps?
A: Aluminum and Tin Cans bin

Q: Wire hangers?
A: Metal Objects bin - or Princess Cleaners (good condition only) Rte. 28 and George Ryder Rd.

Q: Plastic bags?
A: Area supermarkets (clean, dry)

Q: Plastic flower pots?
A: Plastics #3 thru 7 (relatively clean)

Q: Styrofoam peanuts & bubble wrap?
A: UPS Store East Harwich, Barn Hill Pottery, Chatham Pottery (clean only)

Finally, a few comments from your Chatham Recycling Center workers:
*PLEASE READ the signs. If you're still not sure, PLEASE ASK.
*Metal Objects bin: small objects only, no electrical items. (Most go to other area at no charge. Please ask at entrance.)
*Please understand that the magazine table had to be removed due to budget cuts and man hours required to tend to it. Please continue to recycle your magazines.

Got a question? info@chathamrecycles.com

Thanks for your continued cooperation!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column July 7, 2011


So glad you asked!   For your consideration…

* Recycling conserves natural resources such as water, minerals and wood which are necessary to make brand new products.
* Recycling saves energy because less is used to manufacture new products.
* Recycling produces fewer greenhouse gases thereby addressing global warming, because industries burn fewer fossil fuels in manufacturing and transportation.
* Recycling kept 82 million tons of waste from landfills and incinerators in 2009.
* Recycling does not always earn a profit, but it always costs less than waste disposal.
* Towns and individuals can earn money from some recyclables.
* Recycling programs create 4 jobs for every 1 job in the waste disposal industry.
* By conserving natural resources, recycling prevents the destruction of many natural habitats.
* Recycling decreases soil erosion associated with the mining and logging of natural resources.

Next question?

Seriously, feel free to send any questions to: info@ChathamRecycles.org

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column June 9, 2011


Plastics #3 through #7, that is. 

As you probably know by now, the Chatham Transfer Station is once again accepting plastic containers #3 through #7 for recycling (marked inside the universal triangle recycling logo).

Hooray! This is wonderful news for all of us, since many items - yogurt, cream cheese, takeout food, prescriptions, just to name a few - come in this type of plastic container.

And of course, plastics #1 and #2 continue to be accepted.

That's the good news. 

And now for the less than wonderful news: While we are just as excited as you to again finally be able to send these items to be recycled, rather than into the trash, we're running
into a bit of a "contamination" problem. Simply put, this means that too many NON plastic #3-7 items are ending up in this collection. 

Please remember to look for #3, 4, 5, 6 or 7 inside the universal triangle recycling logo somewhere on the container. And don't even bother looking on any styrofoam container.
Styrofoam is not allowed at all. Also not allowed: motor oil containers. 

We're all very happy and grateful to the Transfer Station crew to be able to recycle our plastics #3 - 7 again. Let's be sure to do it right so we can have it available for a long time!

Thanks for you cooperation!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column May 26, 2011


Whether you're on vacation, heading to your own neighborhood beach, planning a backyard bar-b-que or going camping, don't forget to pack your manners...for Mother Nature! A few helpful hints for eco-friendly outdoor festivities:

*Set out a labeled bag/bin to collect recyclables at your picnic, party, or campsite, and encourage friends/guests to use it.

*Bring food and beverages in recyclable or reusable packaging. (More beverages in aluminum cans and plastic bottles are consumed between now and Labor Day than any other time of year.)

*Use a backback or beach bag to carry out your recyclables.

*If possible, bring plates, glasses, napkins, dinnerware and tablecloths that can be washed and reused. (These days even many plastic plates, cups and utensils can go in your dishwasher.)

*If you simply can't give up your paper plates, napkins & cups, at least buy those that have more than 50% post-consumer content.

* In Chatham, look for recycling bins alongside the Big Belly solar-powered trash containers around town.

*And have a wonderful, safe, GREEN summer!

Thanks again to all who made ChathamRecycles' 4th Annual RecycleFest a big success!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column May 12, 2011

Cape Cod Chronicle Column April 28, 2011

Cape Cod Chronicle Column April 14, 2011

Saturday, April 22 is Earth Day. The theme this 41st year is A Billion Acts of Green:
personal, organizational and corporate pledges to better our environment.
The goal is to register one billion acts -- anything from using your car a little less to converting your business to solar --
before the Earth Summit in Rio in 2012. It's easy to pledge -- 80 million so far!  Please visit:


ChathamRecycles. org
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Cape Cod Chronicle Column March 31, 2011


News Flash!

Plastics 3 through 7 are coming back!

Yep, in just a few days, the Chatham Transfer Station will be accepting plastic containers #'s 3 through 7 (items MUST have recycling symbol and number - no styrofoam or unmarked items please). Plastics #1 and #2 continue to be accepted.

Watch for signs at the Recycling Center, and thanks so much for your patience!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column March 17, 2011


Check out the following behaviors from "Environmental Leader" and see where you land on the "Green Gauge." Do you:

*Buy environmentally friendly products?
*Buy products which use less packaging?
*Limit energy use at home?
*Buy energy-efficient appliances/insulation?
*Refuse to buy products from companies with poor environmental
*Buy recycled products?
*Recycle at home?

None of the above = totally green-less! (16% of population)
1 to 4 of the above = light green (50% of population)
5 or 6 = medium green (27%)
All 7 = deep lush green (7%)

Want to get even greener? Try reusable shopping bags; buy local; support Farmers Markets; carry reusable water bottle & coffee mug; use a rain barrel for watering lawn & garden; use CFL light bulbs throughout the house.

Toast yourself this St. Patrick's Day for all you do. Then think about what we can all do to make ourselves even greener!

It's not always easy being green, but it's always worth it!
Thanks so much to all who helped make our 2nd Annual Book & Media Swap a huge success!

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column Feb. 17 & March 3, 2011

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Cape Cod Chronicle Column 2/3/11

A fond farewell and great big


for their tireless, cheerful and efficient operation
of the Chatham Transfer Station Gift Shop
all these years.

Happy well-earned "retirement," Bob and Jeanne.
We'll miss you!

Anyone interested in taking over at the Gift Shop? We sure could use your help!
More info: Jeff Bremner, 508-945-0156

Save the Date!
ChathamRecycles' 2nd Annual Book & Media Swap,
Saturday, March 12, 10am - 2pm
Chatham Community Center
Watch for more info.

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Cape Cod Chronicle Column 1/20/11

11 for '11!

Think about what you use every single day for: morning shower, making coffee, work commute, drive to lunch, watching TV, doing laundry, etc. It all adds up. Now think about how much time, money and resources you’d save if you just used a little bit less each day. Some things to consider in 2011:
1. Turn the thermostat down a few degrees
2. Using cold water can save 90 percent of your washing machine’s power utilization.
3. Use products made from recycled content to cut down on your use of virgin materials.
4. Shorten your shower one minute and save 150 gallons of water per month.
5. Use Less Paper. If you have to print, print on both sides and recycle it when you can.
6. Use Less Packaging. Try buying from bulk bins and recycle your packaging.
7. Use Fewer Hazardous Materials. Always read labels, and try using natural pesticides and making your own cleaning products.
8. Use Less Gas. Slow down! 55 mph can give you 21 percent better mileage than 65 mph. Buy gas early in the morning or late at night to get more for your money.
9. Use Less Tech. Electronics drain electricity, use non-renewable metals and contain toxic chemicals. Use fewer electronics, turn off or "sleep" when not in use, and properly dispose of used ones.
10. Create Less Trash. The average American throws away 90,000 pounds of trash in his or her lifetime. Use reusables and recyclables whenever possible!
11. Use Fewer Disposables. They may be convenient, but not for Mother Earth. Again, reusables and/or recyclables!

11 for '11! Every little bit helps!
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Saturday, January 8, 2011

Cape Cod Chronicle Column 1/6/11

Happy Green Year!

Cape Cod Chronicle Column 12/30/10

"The ultimate test of man's conscience may be
his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations
whose words of thanks will not be heard."

— Gaylord Nelson
former governor of Wisconsin, co-founder of Earth Day

Cape Cod Chronicle Column 12/9/10


Forgive us our yuletide e-editing, and now let’s sit back and enjoy these tasty holiday morsels...

Eco-Friendly Wrapping Paper
Most mass-produced wrapping paper ends up in the trash. Instead, get creative! Consider reusable gift bags, newspaper, maps, magazines, comics, children’s art, old greeting cards or even fabric (new scarf, dish towel, bandana, etc.). If every family wrapped just three gifts this way, it would save enough paper to cover 45,000 football fields.  If you must buy gift-wrap, look for recycled - and ideally recyclable - paper. Avoid foil-wrap as it isn't recyclable at all. Use little or no tape if possible.

Energy-Saving Holiday Lights
A no-brainer - Less energy, lower bills!

Include Organic and Local Foods in Your Holiday Feast
Check it out!  http://www.ediblecommunities.com/capecod/resources/resources.htm

Get a Pesticide-Free Tree
Some  Christmas tree growers use 40 different pesticides, as well as chemical colorants. There are now a number of tree-farms that sell pesticide-free trees, so ask your local Christmas tree seller, or find an organic tree farm near you: http://www.localharvest.org

Recycle Your Christmas Tree
The real vs. artificial debate continues, both having their pros and cons. Some people put their live tree, roots and all, in a pot to replant outside after Christmas. Sadly, each year, 10 million Christmas trees end up in the trash, and there is no ‘pro’ in that. Take your tree to Chatham's Transfer Station for recycling into mulch or wood chips.

(multiple sources, including the Sierra Club)

                                                  Happy Holidays to All
                                           And one more important message....

                         WELCOME BACK, JEFF!  WE MISSED YOU!

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Cape Cod Chronicle Column 11/25/10

Guess that Number!

*6 billion...
Tons of extra waste Americans generate between Thanksgiving and New Year's (25% more than usual).

less energy used by Energy Star-qualified holiday lights, compared with conventional strands.

*1.5 billion...
Christmas cards sent in the U.S. each year. Consider Christmas postcards instead - less postage and MUCH less paper!

*16.6 billion...
letters and packages delivered in December 2009.

*38 thousand...
miles of ribbon thrown out each year.

of Americans say they would prefer a reduced focus on holiday gifts.

of annual battery sales occuring during the holidays.

*50 million...
Christmas trees cut down in the U.S. each holiday season.

*30 million...
Christmas trees that end up in landfills each year.

*4 thousand...
Christmas tree recycling programs across the U.S.

(Multiple sources including Audubon, Nov-Dec 2010. Thanks, Jeanne!)
Congratulations to our Girl Scouts!

Caty Street, Emma Bowden, Alena Hunt and Madison Murphy-Canto of Junior Troop 8785 received Bronze Awards on Sunday November 21st at the annual Pot-Luck Supper.  This highest award a Junior Girl Scout can receive was given for the girls' work in the past year on recycling, especially with various Chatham Recycles events. We thank you so much for all your help and are proud and happy for you on the occasion of this well-deserved award! 

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Saturday, November 6, 2010

Cape Cod Chronicle Column 11/11/10


ChathamRecycles' 3rd annual Drop & Swap was a big success!! 

Our e-waste collection took in over 20 computers, 20 monitors, 32 TV’s and many other non-CRT electronics including printers, phones, keyboards, radios and stereo equipment. These are guaranteed to be recycled responsibly by Metech Recycling.

Many items came and went all day at the Gift Shop. Special thanks to Monica, our AmeriCorps member serving with the Town this year, for the preparation; to Bob Staake for the eye-catching poster; to Bob & Jeanne Eaves and their helpers for the extra assistance; to Jack, Dave, Joe and Carl for helping facilitate; to the Girl Scouts for their participation in the special collections…..and of course to our visiting AmeriCorps volunteers!!

Special collections took in many donations for:  Bikes Not Bombs, Brewster Animal Rescue Shelter, Lower Cape Outreach Council, Crazy Crayons, New Eyes for the Needy, Nike's Reuse-a-Shoe, Cell Phones for Soldiers, and Trick or Teeth for Appalachia residents.

Drop & Swap guests were treated to free apple cider, reusable shopping bags, bumper stickers and informational pamphlets.

Thanks so very much to all who attended, assisted or donated items, especially:

Chatham Village Market
Carmine's Pizza, Chatham
East Harwich Stop & Shop
AmeriCorps Cape Cod Volunteers
Chatham Girl Scout Junior Troop 8785 and Cadette Troop 8775
Chatham Transfer Station Staff
And YOU, our Droppers & Swappers!

This event was funded in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.

November 15 is America Recycles Day. Please pledge to increase your recycling and encourage family & friends!

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Saturday, October 2, 2010

Cape Cod Chronicle Column 9/30/10


At Lighthouse Beach, Kate Gould Park, the Community Center??

Now, before you look down with worry and start mentally retracing your steps....

We're talking trash cans!

Specifically, Chatham's three new “BigBelly” solar-powered trash compactors. These new additions to the town's solid waste program, and their accompanying recycling receptacles, were obtained in early summer through a grant from the Massachusetts' Renewable Energy Trust, now partnered with the state's Clean Energy Center.

The containers compact the trash through a solar-powered motor, allowing for fewer pickups per day. The recycling containers alongside each BigBelly do not compact but rather encourage convenient, immediate recycling of bottles and cans.

While purchasing the rather pricey BigBellys for the approximately 100 trash can locations throughout Chatham is not realistic at this time, they do, according to Chatham Director of Parks and Recreation Dan Tobin, prove particulary helpful at high usage locations and activities like Lighthouse Beach, Kate Gould Park (Band Concerts), the Community Center
and special events.

So the next time you’re enjoying one of Chatham's favorite destinations or colorful fairs and festivals, look for a Big Belly!


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Cape Cod Chronicle Column 9/16/10

A Very Happy School Year to All!

So that we can all be Educated Earthlings, here are a few tips for any remaining purchases for your student...

Please try to buy:
    •    Pencils (Post Consumer Waste (PCW) content or wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council  (FSC)
    *    Refillable pens
    •    Notebooks and paper supplies made of recycled paper (PCW and Process Chlorine Free (PCF)
    •    Notebooks covered in cardboard
    •    Water-based paints and poster paints
    •    White school glue or paste
    •    Lunchboxes with re-usable containers

Please try to avoid:
    •    Magic markers
    •    Disposable pens
    •    Plastic folders, notebooks
    •    Acrylic paints and scented art products
    •    Epoxy or instant bonding glues
    •    Dyes made of fiber reactive or commercial dyes
    •    Paper and plastic lunch bags - plastic and aluminum wrap

Encourage your student to recycle at school and maybe even join the Recycling Club!

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Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Cape Cod Chronicle Column Trivia Question, Sept. 3, 2009

How much less energy is required to make aluminum cans from recycled cans than to make them from raw ore?
a) 25% b) 55% c) 95%

Answer: c) 95% !!!!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Well, Hello, Dolly -- and Thanks!

My friend Nancy Maglione, Finance Director for Amherst for 18 years, visited last week. I took her to "the dump" to show her what an outstanding facility Chatham has. She loved it -- the recycling and how accessible it is. It's all good! Chatham has a rocking landfill/transfer station. Your recycle facility is a model! Quite remarkable.

Dolly Jolly
Amherst, Ma.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cape Cod Chronicle Trivia Answer for August 6, 2009

Q: True or False...
Americans represent only 5% of the world population, yet we produce over 25% of the world’s trash.

A. False. We produce over 50% of the world's trash!

Friday, July 17, 2009

This Week's Cape Cod Chronicle Recycling Trivia Question

In 1865, who roamed the streets of New York collecting garbage?

A: 10,000 hogs

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Chatham Parade July 4th

Dont miss the ChathamRecycles float in this years July4th Parade. We will be out collecting all the parade watchers recylcables and educating on the importance of recylcing.
So wave hello! or pass us your empty soda cans as we pass by!
Happy 4th!

Monday, May 18, 2009

RecycleFest 2009 a Hit!!!

The 2nd annual RecycleFest at the Chatham Transfer Station was a big success. In addition to all the regular items recycled that day, we collected:
375 towels and blankets for Brewster Animal Rescue League
18 bicycles for Bikes not Bombs
and 5.92 tons of e-waste!! (includes 55 TVs, 57 computers, 74 monitors)

We wish to thank the following for their generous support:

Chatham Natural Market
East Harwich Stop & Shop
Chatham PTO
Faith and Scott Rushnak
Chatham Candy Manor
Cape & Islands Shredding
Chatham Girl Scouts
Issues Around the World Club
AmeriCorps Cape Cod
Joey Mars
Cape Light Compact
Cape Cod Cooperative Extension
Catherine Moye and Chatham Elementary art students
Chatham Middle School Recycling Club
All our visitors

and the incredible Chatham Transfer Station crew!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Thursday, February 5, 2009

"Get Cash for Your Gadgets"- Great Site!

Leftover Electronics? Great New Site!
"The easiest, fastest way to sell or recycle your gadgets.
Check it out: Gazelle.com

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Check Out Our New Blog!

Visit our newest blog, "TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT," an online swap shop where individuals and businesses discarding - or seeking - materials can list them for others to see.
It's easy, it's practical, it's recycling! So come take a look and "Take It Or Leave It!"

You can reach "Take It Or Leave It" via ChathamRecycles.org or via this link: http://takeitorleaveitblog.blogspot.com/

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year Recyclers!

Start out 2009 with a great new way to reduce resources. Try out the new ecofont that uses less ink! to help save on ink cartridges used and disposed of!

as you can see how the Ecofont is created by omitting parts of the letter. At the shown size, this obviously is not very nice, but at a regular font size it is actually very usable. Naturally, the results vary depending on your software and the quality of your screen. The Ecofonts works best for OpenOffice, AppleWorks and MS Office 2007. Printing with a laser printer will give the best printing results.
The Ecofont is based on the Vera Sans, an Open Source letter, and is available for Windows, Mac OSX and Linux.
Download it today! and Reduce, Reuse, Recyle!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

No Plastics #3 - 7 for Now

Please note that the Chatham Transfer Station is not currently accepting plastics #3 through #7 for recycling. This is an unfortunate occurrence due to the plastics market which we hope will be resolved very soon. Until then, please make every effort to purchase items in other types of containers - glass, plastics #1 and #2, tin, cardboard. We will keep you posted. You may also phone the Transfer Station at 508-945-5156 for up to date information.

Thanks to all our Droppers, Swappers and Helpers!

Because of you, the rain could not dampen our spirits on America Recycles Day, Saturday, November 15, 2008. ChathamRecycles' "Drop & Swap" at the Transfer Station Gift Shop was a big success. Now all those items - many of them Christmas decorations - are being reused instead of going into the waste stream. Well done, Chatham!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Want to help increase recycling rates at Chatham’s Transfer Station? We are looking for cheerful, energetic volunteers to show visitors what and where to recycle. Any day, any time you can spare - all ages welcome! Please call 508-945-5156 or email: info@chathamrecycles.org.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Kitchen Scrap Buckets and Composting Bins Are Here!

Kitchen Scrap Buckets ($7) and Composting Bins ($32) are now available at the Permit Office on George Ryder Road. Come soon - they won't last!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Band Concert Recycles!

If you haven't seen the new recycling containers at Kate Gould Park in the center of town, check them out! Plastic, aluminum AND glass. Very cool. Thanks, Chatham, Jeff, Dan, Dave, Steve, Kevin, Nick, and all! We know it will mean more work for you and we're very grateful.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Thank You Chronicle

On behalf of ChathamRecycles, I would like to express my sincere thanks to Tim Wood and the Chronicle staff for making coverage of recycling and other environmental issues in Chatham and Harwich a top priority. Issues such as these are critically important to our community and the Chronicle does a great job of providing valuable information to spark discussions among residents about what we all can do to help. Without your support last week's RecycleFest would not have been the success that it was.

David Quinn,
Member of Chatham Recycles & AmeriCorps Cape Cod

A big thank you from all ChathamRecycles members:

Friday, May 9, 2008

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Keep Mercury from Rising

Mercury is a naturally occurring element that is toxic to people and wildlife. Human activities such as coal burning and trash disposal have significantly increased mercury levels in the environment When products containing mercury are broken or thrown in the trash, outdoors, or down the drain, mercury cycles through the environment, polluting air and water, and accumulating in fish. You and your family can be exposed to mercury by breathing its fumes, eating contaminated fish, or touching spilled mercury.
All the New England states have lakes and ponds with fish that have elevated levels of mercury. In Massachusetts, almost half of the lakes and ponds tested have one or more types of fish with unsafe levels of mercury. Over 40 states have issued fish consumption advisories due to mercury.
Many common products contain mercury and can pollute the environment when they are incinerated, broken, or disposed of down drains.
Fluorescent and compact fluorescent bulbs.
Mercury containing thermometers
Mercury thermostats
Batteries made before 1990
Button batteries, like those found in watches, calculators and hearing aids.
Pilot lights in gas appliances such as stoves, water heaters, furnaces, washers, dryers and heaters
Switches found in some smoke detctors
older chemistry sets
flat panel screens
Proper disposal of Mercury containing products will help prevent it from entering the environment. Residents should bring their Mercury containing products to the Chatham Transfer Station Recycling Center Mercury Collection Shed. Or to receive a free replacement thermometer or thermostats bring your old ones to the Chatham Health Department! Call 508-945-5165 or chathamrecycles.org for more information.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Aye, There's The Rub(ber)

When you consider that "Americans throw out 300 million automobile tires a year", you gotta commend anyone who thinks outside of the box -- or at least the gas-guzzling SUV. So with all that rubber just taking up real estate in landfills around the world, what's a socially-conscious industrial designer to do? Apparently, the answer is "make rubber tubs". Don't take this the wrong way -- we LOVE anything to do with recycling -- but if there's nothing uglier than an old, bald tire, it would have to be, well, a tub made from old, bald tires masquerading as chic utilitarian ware. And just in case you want to add insult to injury, get out your checkbook because THREE of these babies are gonna set you back $150 -- $350 for a trio if you opt for the slightly more appealing tall boys. These tubs were made in Egypt and we've always had to wonder about the egyptians, but I guess if you introduce the globe to the concept of 9-year-old boy kings overseeing your entire civilization as well as the building of pyramids, might as well blaze the recycling trails with something like this. (Source: Design Within Reach)

Friday, April 4, 2008

Where Does It Go?

After we reduce, reuse, recycle...after we compost...what happens to what's left?

Chatham currently pays $52 per ton to haul and dispose of trash at Covanta Energy's SEMASS incinerators in Rochester, MA. $37.50 of this is a contracted 'tipping fee'. Chatham was prudent 23 years ago in capping its landfill and signing a 30-year contract for garbage incineration which expires in 2015, a scant 7 years hence. Upon renewal, our SEMASS tipping fee will more than likely double, and given today's uncertainties, the cost of haulage from now on will be anyone's guess.

We MUST get serious about reducing the waste going to SEMASS.

First, residents and businesses must recycle more. A reasonable goal is 50 % of the waste stream. Chatham's 2006 rate was about 21 %. 2007 numbers are looking better, the official percentage rate to be reported by the State in April. Recycling is not only the right thing to do for the environment, but the sale of recyclables generates revenue for Chatham, as well as removing the cost of hauling them to SEMASS.

Second, homeowners should compost kitchen organics, except fats and oils. (These should not go down the sink, rather put in the trash or take relatively clean used vegetable oil to the Recycling Area's oil shed.) Water is the bulk of the weight of organic materials and should be removed whenever possible.

Third, any hazardous waste should be set aside for Hazardous Waste Collection dates in Harwich, except mercury which is accepted at Chatham's Recycling Area. (This includes fluorescent bulbs old and new; NICAD batteries; some button-cell batteries from hearing aids and watches; cell phones; ballast resisters; thermostats; thermometers and smoke detectors.)
What's left is trucked to SEMASS' shred-and-burn facility which incinerates 1million tons of trash per year. This fuels generators which produce enough electricity to operate the plant and, via NSTAR, more than 75,000 homes. SEMASS recovers $1,000 in coins per day! 50,000 tons of other recyclable metals are recovered annually. Ninety per cent of the processed refuse is combusted, leaving about 100,000 tons of ash residue annually which is landfilled in Carver, Massachusetts.

The word from SEMASS? "We are the LAST step, not the first step, in recycling."

For more details, visit SEMASS.

Have you visited ChathamRecycles.org yet? Come take a look!

spot illustration © 2007 by Bob Staake - All Rights Reserved
article by G

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Toys R Us Goes Green

Toys “R” Us Goes Green With New Branded Toy Collection

Toys “R” Us will launch an exclusive line of environmentally friendly toys that will be marketed under the Toys “R” Us brand. The toys are being introduced as more kids and families strive to make lifestyle changes that incorporate more organic and natural products. The first toys in the collection—Natural Wooden Toys, Natural Cotton plush animals, and Organic Cotton Dolls—will be available exclusively at Toys “R” Us stores nationwide and online at www.Toysrus.com by Earth Day, April 22. Additional items will be introduced later this year.

The toys, which promote “Good Green Fun,” come packaged in earth-tone colored boxes that bear a special “R” seal. This seal consists of a green version of the iconic Toys “R” Us reversed “R” logo with a green leaf, encircled by the words “Recycle, Renew, Reuse, Re-think,” and signifies for parents that the toys are eco-friendly.

“We know that kids are becoming more environmentally conscious and are curious about how they can do their part to help protect the planet,” says Karen Dodge, chief merchandising officer, Toys “R” Us, US. “Going green is more than just a trend. It’s becoming a lifestyle. This is just our first step in offering our customers the best selection of eco-friendly and organic products in all of our Toys “R” Us stores nationwide.”

Crafted from natural materials, these items come in packaging that is made from no less than 70% recycled material. The Natural Wooden Toys are decorated using a unique wood-burning technique, which offers a classic look. The Natural Cotton plush animals and Organic Cotton Dolls are colored using natural or water-based dyes and are made with unprocessed, unbleached, and untreated cotton.

In addition, the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified that the materials used to make the Natural Wooden Toys were sourced from well-managed forests, using a system of ten rules that define responsible forest management. Each wooden product in the collection is marked with an identifiable FSC logo.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Press Release:Paper Recycling Success Story in U.S.

Paper Recycling Hits Record High

Industry Meets Goal Ahead of Schedule, Sets New Aggressive Target

New York, NY – In 2007, an all-time high of 56 percent of the paper consumed in America was recovered for recycling, achieving a significant industry goal five years ahead of schedule. Announcing the achievement today, the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) also set a new goal of 60 percent recovery by 2012.
“Industry is demonstrating a real commitment to environmental sustainability by continuing to set and achieve aggressive paper recovery goals,” said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman. “Whether at home, school, or work, paper recovery is something we can all do to make a difference.”
“While the upward trend in recovery rates is most encouraging, getting to 60 percent is an important challenge for all of us. Everyone has a role to play in our effort to sustain and grow the country’s recycling programs and recover more paper,” continued Patrick J. Moore, chairman and CEO, Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation. Smurfit-Stone is a longstanding AF&PA member and is one of the world's largest paper recyclers. The company collected more than 7 million tons of recyclable material in 2007.
The 54.3 million tons of paper recovered in 2007 add up to more than 360 pounds for every man, woman, and child in America. Each percentage point is the equivalent of approximately one million additional tons of recovered paper – enough to fill more than 14,000 railroad cars.
Joining the announcement at the industry's 131st Annual Paper Week conference, Maria Vickers, Deputy Director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Solid Waste applauded the paper industry's achievements in increasing paper recycling, noting that “in 2007, the US recycled over 25 million tons more paper than was recycled in 1990. This increase in paper recycling reduced emissions by more than 97 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, comparable to the annual emissions of nearly 18 million cars.” She also noted that EPA and AF&PA continue to work together on projects to stimulate paper recycling across the country.
Matthew McKenna, president and CEO of national nonprofit Keep America Beautiful, a partner of AF&PA on projects to promote paper recycling in schools, praised the Association and its members for their efforts. “True environmental progress, like what we celebrate today, comes when industries work together with communities, organizations, and dedicated individuals to make things happen.”
AF&PA is the national trade association of the forest, paper, and wood products industry. AF&PA represents companies and related associations that engage in or represent the manufacture of pulp, paper, paperboard, and wood products. The forest products industry accounts for approximately 6 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing output, employs more than one million people, and ranks among the top 10 manufacturing employers in 42 states with an estimated payroll exceeding $50 billion. Visit AF&PA online at www.afandpa.org.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Tap vs. Bottled Water

Our most recent ChathamRecycles column in the Cape Cod Chronicle championed tap water as a better choice than bottled water.
While we still feel strongly that tap water is the better option for many reasons, please note 2 addendums:
1) Chatham's municipal water does not contain fluoride.
2) At the same time our column ran, an Associated Press article revealed that pharmaceuticals had been found in some municipal drinking water. Procter and Gamble, in response to our query, said their Pur filters may filter out some of these, but cannot guarantee; and Chatham's Water and Sewer Dept. Director William Redfield recommended in today's Chronicle that residents throw leftover medicines in the trash, not in the sewer system. Until we can test and treat for these contaminants, these are good ideas!

Welcome ChathamRecycles.org Members!

You've all been sent emails inviting you to participate as official AUTHORS on our blog, so you simply need to respond to that email and you can start creating POSTS (in addition to posting comments to any public post here). It's quite easy to do, so respond to that email and start interacting!

Welcome David!
Welcome Paulette!
Welcome Bob!
Welcome Judith!
Welcome Dan!
Welcome Judie!
Welcome Shannon!

(We're still waiting for Kristin, Dan and Paul to join us)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Mark Your Calendars, Chatham!

Get ready, Chatham -- Recyclefest 2008 comes to town on May 21, 2008!

Click here for details!