Archive for June, 2010

GreenSortATL is an innovative solution to recycling. Instead of placing and maintaining two containers everywhere in Atlanta’s International airport and then expecting people from all over the world to decipher and know what is recyclable or not, there is just one container for everything and the trash is sorted off site.

Maybe other airports, malls, stadiums, and waste management companies will start similar programs.

http://www.atlanta-airport.com/hjn/2009/12/fa1.htm:

Hartsfield-Jackson introduces innovative recycling program
By Staff Writers

Hartsfield-Jackson on November 12 debuted its new recycling program, GreenSortATL. The program was unveiled just in time for America Recycles Day on November 15.

GreenSortATL eliminates the need for separate recycling containers. Under the new program, all waste generated by passengers, employees and businesses goes into the same container and is taken to a facility, where it is sorted and recycled. The Airport plans to reduce the amount of trash it sends to landfills by 50 percent by the end of the program’s first year — and by 70 percent by the end of the second year.

“One of Hartsfield-Jackson’s goals is to operate in an environmentally responsible manner, and that’s why we are pleased to launch our new recycling program,” said Aviation General Manager Ben DeCosta. “We aim for GreenSortATL to become one of the largest such programs in the Southeast and to make Hartsfield-Jackson as green as any airport in the nation.”

Receptacles throughout the Airport will be labeled with the GreenSortATL logo and slogan: “You Trash. We Sort. It’s Recycled.”

Atlanta Airlines Terminal Corp. (AATC), the Airport’s facility management company, manages the recycling program. Solid-waste handling company Waste Pro USA transports waste via an alternative-fuel truck to a material recovery facility (MRF), where it is sorted. All recyclable materials are recycled, and the rest is sent to landfills.

“Waste Pro is honored to be the green waste hauler for Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Waste Pro is focused on recycling today for a better tomorrow,” said Jeanie Dubinski, general counsel, Waste Pro USA.

The Airport generates nearly 70 tons of paper, plastic, food and other trash daily.

“Sustainability is an important consideration of AATC in the maintenance and operation of the central passenger terminal complex at Hartsfield-Jackson,” said Kim Vagher, AATC executive director. “The solution, developed in partnership with Waste Pro USA, exceeded our expectations. The implementation of an MRF not only solved all of our operational and financial obstacles; it creates opportunities.”

Among those opportunities is employment; the recycling program will create 28 jobs.

Other initiatives in the Airport’s sustainability program include:

  • New fixtures and plumbing in terminal restrooms, which save almost 7 million gallons of water per month.
  • Water-conserving chiller plants.
  • A water conservation and recovery system, which recaptures more than 145 million gallons of water per year.
  • Energy conservation efforts, resulting in power savings of more than 7 million kilowatt-hours of electricity in only a 10-month period.

To learn more about the Airport’s recycling program, please visit www.atlanta-airport.com/recycle.

Read this article from CNN about the possibility of a new law in New York that would make everyone an organ donor unless you opt out. I guess our organs can officially be compared to SPAM and email lists.

http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/05/10/organ.donation.jobs.laws/

I can understand the point that we need more organ donors, but why be sneaky about it. Most people would never know about this law and understand it enough to opt out if that’s what they wanted to do. Instead, why not create an incentive? What about a free driver’s license renewal for becoming an organ donor or a discounted vehicle registration for becoming an organ donor? You would generally register yourself as an organ donor at the department of motor vehicles so create a reason for more people to become an organ donor! Don’t just pass a law making everyone a donor without their knowledge.

This is exactly why folks don’t like government, it’s time to be more creative in our policy making.

We recently posted about a welfare cell phone program and that got us thinking, should we just give subsidies away for free or should we get something positive in return? Disney is giving away tickets to their theme parks for a day of community service, so maybe we should ask this of those taking advantage of welfare and other programs like Medicare / Medicaid. If you need help from your fellow citizens, you should have to give some back to others in need.

It doesn’t have to be a huge obligation, but what about 8 hours per month with exceptions for individuals who are not capable of sparring 8 hours per month. A single mother of 5 or a disabled veteran might not be able to volunteer, but if you’re an able-bodied American collecting unemployment, getting subsidized healthcare, or a free cell phone you should have to give back to the community that gave to you as a volunteer.

Volunteers are always in high demand. Who knows, getting out there and volunteering for 8 hours while collecting unemployment could actually help you create a relationship that leads to full time work.

Almost 30% of Americans volunteer is some capacity or another each year, which is a good number, but there is always a demand for more volunteers. Here are some sites worth checking out about volunteering:

http://www.serve.gov/

http://www.volunteeringinamerica.gov/

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/volun.nr0.htm

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