04/30/04 — Keep Wayne County Beautiful recaps successful events

View Archive

Keep Wayne County Beautiful recaps successful events

By Barbara Arntsen
Published in News on April 30, 2004 2:03 PM

Keep Wayne County Beautiful just finished a month jammed packed with activities and will soon be gearing up for a new educational recycling program.

One of the big events was the biannual Litter Sweep, which was held on April 17. About 150 people participated, picking up over five tons of litter.

Simonne Cato, executive director of KWCB, said that the "Amnesty Day" held by the county on the same day was also successful. On that day the county commissioners agreed to waive landfill fees for all county residents, other than commercial waste haulers. This allowed people to throw out wood, bricks, limbs, yard waste and construction debris at no cost.

Over 400 tons of trash were brought to the landfill on that day by citizens all over the county.

In addition to Litter Sweep, a number of educational programs on the environment was conducted in April for middle school students.

Ms. Cato said that the effect of pollution on wildlife in her "Who Polluted the Neuse?" presentation had a strong effect on the students.

"Talking about keeping the environment clean or the cost of pollution doesn't mean as much to them," she said. "But when you talk about fish or whales starving after eating plastic, that affects them."

Students at Greenwood Elementary also created a butterfly garden on Earth Day.

Another environmental program was held at the Cliffs of the Neuse for over 100 sixth-graders.

This summer, KWCB will begin a series of recycling advertisements for its new recycling program in the schools.

The program is designed to reuse the paper in the schools, reduce the amount being dumped in the landfill and, at the same time, help disabled people.

A $50,000 grant from the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources will be split between KWCB and the Wayne Opportunity Center, which provides work for people with disabilities.

The two organizations submitted an application for the grant after realizing that a partnership would allow them to start a paper and cardboard recycling program in the schools.

KWCB will be responsible for educational outreach, overseeing the program and assessing its progress.

Recycling paper, Ms. Cato said, was an obvious start for the program because the abundant schools use so much of it.

KWCB is also joining with Waste Industries to participate in the "Feast in the East," event in October.

Ms. Cato said that they want to make it a litter free event, so trash bins and eye-catching recycling bins will be placed at convenient locations for the event. Waste Industries is providing the bins and the labor needed to bring and take away the bins.