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Students look to answer question about local waste

How much waste can we save from the landfill as a community?

This is a question the MTU Sustainability Demonstration House is asking during its The Keweenaw’s First Waste Reduction Drive, this Saturday, from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. at Michigan Tech’s Lot 24, on Sharon Avenue in Houghton, near the Gates Tennis Center and Sherman Field.

There are five items that will be collected, to be repurposed:

• Foil-lined granola/energy bar wrappers

• Plastic bottle caps and rings

• Any plastic bag containing a recycling number

• Alkaline batteries

• Egg cartons (Styrofoam)

Although these items can not be recycled curbside, that does not mean they can not be recycled or reused. The Sustainability team has found a unique recycle/reuse opportunity for these five items:

• Foil-lined wrappers will be given to Terra Cycle to be converted into a hard plastic for manufacturing.

• Plastic bottle caps and rings will be sent to Preserve to be converted into kitchenware and toothbrushes.

• Plastic bags will be properly recycled.

• Alkaline batteries will be properly recycled.

• Egg cartons will be given to local chicken farmers for reuse.

“We are excited to see the amount of waste we will be saving from the landfill as a community,” the release states. “In addition to reducing landfill waste, we are happy to be educating our community on the many recycle/reuse opportunities available for our waste.”

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

1. COLLECT the following 5 items at your home or office (ensure they are clean):

• Styrofoam and cardboard egg cartons

• Any foil-lined granola/energy bar wrapper

• Plastic bottle caps and rings

• Any plastic bag containing a recycling #

• Batteries

2. BRING your collected items to Fisher Hall on Saturday, June 27

WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO YOUR WASTE?

• Egg cartons will be given to local farmers for reuse

• Foil-lined granola bar wrappers will be melted into a hard plastic by TerraCycle

• Bottle caps and rings will be converted to kitchenware by Preserve

• Batteries and plastic bags will be properly recycled

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