By Col. Deborah B. GraysApril 30, 2009
Fort McPherson & Fort Gillem
In 1970, Gaylord Nelson, a U.S. senator from Wisconsin, spearheaded a grassroots effort to teach environmental stewardship, create awareness of the environment's fragility and ultimately thrust that awareness into the mainstream of American society. The campaign caught on quickly and evolved into Earth Day, which is now celebrated each year on April 22.
The U.S. Army celebrates Earth Day at numerous installations, major commands and organizations in the continental United States and around the world. The Army's Earth Day theme, "Sustaining the environment for a secure future," reflects its commitment to meet the current and future needs of Soldiers, their Families and the nation through the sound stewardship of environmental resources.
Here at Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem, we are doing are part. Last week, we celebrated Earth Day by providing an opportunity for our community to safely dispose of their household hazardous waste.
As part of Fort McPherson's Earth Day celebration, the Base Realignment and Closure Environmental Office staff sponsored an electronic waste (E-waste) recycling and household hazardous waste turn-in event April 24 at Jacobs Park.
As part of the event, the Environmental Office staff collected approximately 400 gallons of household hazardous wastes, including paints, used oil, antifreeze, pesticides and cleaning products.
The total number of pounds of electronic waste turned in is still being calculated, but with several pallets of computers, televisions, printers and radios not making it to the landfill, we think the final turn in poundage will be significant.
In addition to the waste turn-in, a pink, flowering cherry tree was planted at Jacob's Park to commemorate the event and to symbolize Fort McPherson's ongoing commitment to environmental stewardship.
The children from the Child Development Center assisted in the tree planting and decorated containers to hold their very own flowers to take home and plant.
Armywide, events varied, from Earth Day fairs with educational exhibits to tree plantings to other initiatives that actually sustain installation operations.
The Army is committed to making energy security and environmental conversation a consideration for all Army activities in an effort to reduce demand, increase efficiency, seek alternative sources and create a culture of energy accountability and environmental stewardship while sustaining or enhancing operational capabilities.
When we leave this place in September 2011, we can feel proud that we have done our part to make it as environmentally safe for the community as we would want it for our own Families.
Kudos and job well done last week to our Environmental Office staff for their efforts in pulling off a successful recycling event!