By Susan C. Galentine (Fort Carson)November 29, 2012
FORT CARSON, Colo. -- Truckloads worth of old, no longer needed household, lawn care, automotive products and electronics were brought to the old commissary parking lot during Fort Carson's America Recycles Day household hazardous waste collection event Nov. 15.
A steady stream of nearly 200 people drove up and unloaded unwanted products during the day, helping to divert 23,021 pounds of waste from going to the landfill. Products such as pesticides, fertilizer, paints, and automotive products were collected for disposal through the El Paso County Household Hazardous Waste Facility.
"We wanted to use America Recycles Day to educate, promote and celebrate recycling on and around Fort Carson," said Eric Bailey, Directorate of Public Works Operations and Maintenance Division recycle program manager. "We were thrilled with the amount of people who participated and were genuinely interested in keeping waste out of a landfill. The event was a huge success and Fort Carson is proud to have been part of it."
Also collected at the event were electronic-related items -- from old TV sets, VCRs, cell phones, fax machines and printers to data media such as CDs, DVDs and VHS tapes. Fort Carson sells old electronics for a profit to fund the Recycle Program and contributes to installation morale, welfare and recreation funds, Bailey said.
Retired Army Sgt. Brian Schlosser and his wife, Jenny Schlosser, regulars at the Exchange recycle drop-off location, decided to drop off their household waste at the event and learn more about what items can be recycled.
"We've gotten to the point where we hardly have any trash," Brian Schlosser said of their recycling efforts.
Not all of the items dropped are at the final stage of their lifecycle. Latex paints brought in will find new life through a Pueblo vendor, who mixes the paint for reuse and used oil is kept out of the environment and recycled for future use.
Fort Carson units participated in a nonmilitary electronics turn-in competition during the collection event, bringing in 2,061 pounds.
The 242nd Explosive Ordnance Disposal Battalion, 71st Ordnance Group (EOD), brought in the most with 415 pounds of e-waste, followed by the Dental Activity with 352 pounds. All participating units will receive $1 in morale, welfare and recreation funds for each pound turned in.
Donations of food items for Care and Share were encouraged for people dropping off products. More than 307 pounds and $116 were collected for the local charity.
By the numbers:
The following is a waste collection breakdown of items turned in during the Fort Carson America Recycles Day event Nov. 15:
10,660 pounds of electronics, including unit e-waste items (TVs, VCRs, cell phones, fax machines, printers, chargers)
8,586 pounds of paints, stains and solvents
2,525 pounds of automotive products (antifreeze, oil, batteries, cleaners)
803 pounds of household toxic liquids (bleach, cleaners, ammonia)
351 pounds of toxic solids (fertilizer, pesticides, rodent poisons)
48 pounds of data media (DVDS, VHS tapes, CDs)
48 pounds of printer and toner cartridges