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Join Community Energy Systems

Please join Community Energy Systems – for $25 a year you can help us achieve our mission.

Send your contact information and $25 check to:
Community Energy Systems
948 E. Adams St.
Riverton, IL 62561

Repair, Reuse & Recycle

Let’s leave Repair and Reuse for another time. Recycling (participating in the Steady State Economy) is a huge way to save energy and help the planet.

If you live in an area that does not have a recycling program START ONE. In the interim start recycling on your own. When I first moved to New Orleans in the mid 80’s they did not have a citywide recycling program, so I got out the yellow pages and located obvious places that use paper products, plastics and metals. Those are the three biggest sectors of energy consumption in your waste stream as an individual consumer. I bought 4 big Rubbermaid© trashcans and just put those items in them. The fourth one I used as an urban compost pile. Once a month I journeyed to those industrial sites (a paper plant, a plastics plant and a scrap yard) and dropped off my treasures. At first there was some “what are you doing here” going on. But I got to know the people and they began to think of me as a harmless loon. Once I had my personal recycling program in place I then started one at work. Again there was the initial “what?” factor but everybody was pretty proud of it after awhile, and they even started helping me.

Most people however have access to some sort of recycling program, so I suggest that you try to take recycling to a higher level. Take a week and look at your waste stream. No, that’s not the waste stream I am talking about. We will talk about low flow toilets at another place and time. Take a week and see how much “stuff ” you can keep out of the waste stream. If your recycling program (RP) is finicky about glass products find a place that will take glass. I live in a small town whose RP will not take rough card board, but I work in a larger city whose RP does. So I take my cardboard to work with me. Take a load of clothes to Good Will or Salvation Army. Or have a yard sale and get rid of all the stuff you are not using. It’s true what they say about one person’s junk being another’s treasure. I could go on and on about recycling tips. (there are tons of stuff on the web) The point is to take 1-week out of 52 and see how much you don’t have to “throw away”. You will amaze yourself.
Doug Nicodemus

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