BPGC Participates in National Aluminum Recycling Challenge!
The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government is joining with the University of Kentucky , Fayette County Public Schools and other members of the Bluegrass Partnership for a Green Community to compete in the 2007 US Conference of Mayors City Recycling Challenge. This contest challenges cities across the country to collect and recycle aluminum beverage cans. The theme for this year's contest in Lexington is Yes We Can!
The contest runs the entire month of October. The number of aluminum cans collected and recycled during October will be counted to determine what city wins. The total number of cans processed through the LFUCG Recycling Center , Wise Recycling, Baker Iron and Metal and Gordon Steel Company will be totaled for the month of October, and the final result will be compared to cities of comparable size.
In a two-week period during last year's contest, over 105,000 pounds of aluminum beverage cans were collected for recycling in Fayette County, the equivalent of 3,780,000 cans and the LFUCG Recycling Center saw a 10% increase in aluminum can recycling during the contest period. As a result of last year's contest the U.S. Conference of Mayors' awarded Lexington a $5,000 award for winning the Most Innovative Ideas category for marketing, among cities with populations of 250,000 or more
To encourage participation in this year's contest, the Southeast Center for Aluminum Technology (SECAT), Wise Recycling, Harry Gordon Steel Company, and Baker Iron and Metal have contributed funds to establish monetary prizes for the public and private schools that recycle the most cans during October. The three schools that recycle the most aluminum cans per capita (student) will receive $1,250 prizes, three more schools will receive $1,000 each, and three more will receive $750 each.
Approximately one-third of the aluminum beverage cans used nation-wide are produced in Kentucky , and recycling aluminum beverage cans helps create jobs in our state. Aluminum-related facilities employ over 17,000 workers in Kentucky and add over 740 million dollars annually to the state's economy. Secondary (recycled) aluminum (such as beverage cans) is the primary source of aluminum for these facilities.
Recycling aluminum beverage cans also helps conserve resources and save energy. It takes 95% less energy to recycle aluminum than to create it from raw materials. Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to power a TV set for 3 hours, and recycling 40 cans saves the equivalent of one gallon of gasoline. In addition, these cans may be recycled over and over.
To help in this year's contest, residents are encouraged to place their empty aluminum beverage cans in the blue Rosie recycling container at curbside or take them to the Lexington Recycling Center at 360 Thompson Road . Aluminum cans also will be accepted at Baker Iron and Metal located at 740 Rockcastle Avenue , Wise Recycling located at 1554 Old Frankfort Pike, and Harry Gordon Steel Company at 637 Patterson St . All of the empty aluminum cans recycled through these locations count during the contest. So do beverage cans recycled through schools, universities and businesses located in Fayette County .
For more information contact Tom Webb, the Environmental Compliance Coordinator in the LFUCG Department of Environmental Quality at (859) 425 -2808 . Mr. Webb currently chairs The Bluegrass Partnership for a Green Community Reduce Reuse and Recycle Team.
Contact Tom Webb for more information.
Listen to the EnviroMinute on WUKY-FM 91.3 every Tuesday following the noon news to keep up to date on environmental activities across the Bluegrass.
Who are the Partners?
Why a Green Partnership?
Create universal vision of a better Lexington/Bluegrass region
Combined total of 18,350 employees, 2773 vehicles, and 58,180 students creates tremendous opportunities for identifying synergies & sharing talents to implement positive change
Encourage students and citizens alike to participate in community-wide projects
What are the Partnership's goals?
To sustain and preserve regional quality of life
To protect the environment and conserve resources
To minimize waste and prevent pollution
What are potential additional outcomes of partnering?
Cost savings through purchasing agreements
Model behaviour sets positive example
Collaboration leads to cooperation on additional projects
What has happened so far?
Steering Committee formed to assess feasibility of creating an environmental partnership (Winter 2004)
Leadership Meeting introduced senior personnel to the Partnership concept (March 15, 2005)
Bluegrass Partnership for a Green Community Proclamation signed (August 24, 2005)
Three-day work sessions were conducted in November to identify focus areas and delineate potential projects (November, 2005)
Project teams were formed and inaugural goal-setting meetings conducted (February-March, 2006)
Project teams presented project proposals to Steering Committee (June 2006)
Bluegrass Partnership for a Green Community "Creating a Greener Bluegrass" Conference, August 10th and 11th, Lexington's Radisson Plaza Hotel
What are the next steps?
Representatives from each partnering organization are working together to secure support for projects and achieve goals outlined at the BPGC Conference
An Executive Summary will be produced to communicate specific goals to the public.