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Chesy school takes steps toward recycling program

CHESAPEAKE — It was a charming visual demonstrating a less than charming reality. Our landfills are filling up exponentially with the detritus of 21st Century life and there will come a time soon when their capacity is reached.

That’s what a dozen Chesapeake Middle School volunteers were proving as they playacted the various items cast away daily by consumers. However, their pantomime also provided an answer — recycling.

And educating others about what can be recycled and how was the point of the lecture/demonstration of Jonathan Kissell, senior communication coordinator from Rumpke Recycling who came from Cincinnati Thursday afternoon to kick off the school’s recycling program.

“We put things in the ground and hope they go away. It is there forever,” Kissell said. “What can we do to help that problem?”

For the next week the school is focusing on the concept of recycling by bringing it home in its “Make a Difference” poster contest and drink pouch brigade.

This event is the precursor to next year’s all-out effort at the school to encourage and promote recycling.

Fifth and sixth grade students are participating in a poster contest on the theme of “Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.” Also all students are asked to save their drink pouches and bring them in to recycle for cash. That money will go to children’s charities and the middle school.

There are four main kinds of recyclables, Kissell told the assembly: aluminum cans, paper, steel vegetable and soup cans and plastic bottles.

Aluminum cans can be turned into more aluminum cans. In fact, if an aluminum can is recycled, it takes only 60 days from the time it is purchased and contents drunk before it is turned back into another can to be used again.

“Anything in your house that tears can be recycled,” Kissell said. “Junk mail, old papers, the inside rolls in paper towels and cereal boxes.”

Steel soup cans can be recycled into car parts and construction equipment. Likewise plastic drink bottles can be turned into carpeting, speed bumps and piping.

“Sixty percent of everything in the landfills in Ohio could have been recycled,” Kissell said.

“Make sure we are recycling as much as we can. Start small in your house. Put a box by the garbage cans and see how quickly it fills up.”