Archive for the 'recycle' Category

toad

toady

item#: 059
materials: plastic
status: taken (2.13.08)

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update: 4.03.08
toady & nitty
Toady has been hanging out with a couple hamsters these days, Creamsicle and Nitany. I’ve been told that Nitany is blessed with very good markings and an amazing personality.

Rachel told me all about Toady’s new friends:
creamy and toady

One of them is Nitty (Nittany) after the Nittny Lions.We got him 2 years ago. And the other is Creamsicle (we call her Creamy) got her somewhere around September a year ago. The are both so cute. Toady is doing well. He has made a new friend named “Mr. Blik” from a McDonalds kids meal. We picked “Mr. Blik” up in Vail, Colarado in January. Blik becoming Toady’s best friend ofcourse besides me, Nitty and Creamy. Toady misses you and says to keep in touch often. We might have to by him a cell phone, just joking, if i can’t have 1 he can’t have 1.

I love it, no cell phone for Toady.

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sorting

I’m still slowly sorting through the things in my closets, on my shelves, in boxes, etc. and figuring out what to do with them. I released books I don’t have extreme attachment to into the wild using bookcrossing.com. My old glasses, watches, and costume jewelry I sent to New Eyes for the Needy. I went through my closet and found enough items I’ll absolutely never wear to fill three big bags. I took them to Buffalo Exchange. But they didn’t want any of my stuff, not even the Anna Sui skirt or the three pairs of heels I never wore. I ended up buying a few items and hauling my bags across town to drop off at Philadelphia AIDS Thrift. 2083 2238443332 7340E8D1Aa M

Some articles of clothing I can’t even give away, for example a pair blue flannel pants with torn hems. I have about 20 pairs of comfy pants to sleep in, and 4 pairs of jeans with breezy knees, so I’m going to cut the salvageable material into long one-inch strips and crochet a bag or something. Stay tuned for my reuse craft projects.

not easy trying to being green (part 1)

 2414 2256902938 6Bd777Ab8C MMy old room in my parent’s house seems to have turned into a place where old electronics go to die, so I’m working on figuring out the best options for giving these away or places to take them to be properly recycled.

The dead cordless phone (item #033)
status: battery recycled 2.06.08; body still sitting in the kitchen

The phone will continue to sit in my house until I figure out what to do with it, but the nickel cadmium (Ni-Cd) battery is a different story. I found out through the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation, rbrc.org, how much of a problem Ni-Cd batteries can create if not disposed of properly. Here is an excerpt from an Environmental Protection Agency publication:

Health Risks Caused By Batteries Improperly Disposed More than 350 million rechargeable batteries are purchased annually in the United States. Rechargeable batteries, like nickel-cadmium (Ni-Cd) or small sealed lead-acid (SSLA) batteries, contain toxic heavy metals such as cadmium, mercury, and lead. These heavy metals present no threat to human health or the environment while the battery is being used. When thrown away, however, these batteries can cause serious harm to human health and the environment if they are discarded with ordinary household or workplace waste.Approximately 73 percent of municipal solid waste is either land-filled or incinerated. Neither of these methods is suited for the disposal of rechargeable batteries. In landfills, heavy metals from rechargeable batteries have the potential to leach slowly into the soil, ground water, and surface water. When incinerated, the heavy metals can enter the air through smokestack emissions and can concentrate in the ash produced by combustion. When the incinerator ash is disposed of, the heavy metals in the ash can enter the environment. Although these batteries account for a relatively small portion of the total wastes generated in the United States, Ni-Cd batteries accounted for 75 percent of the cadmium found in municipal solid waste in 1995. Similarly, SSLA batteries accounted for 65 percent of the lead found in municipal solid waste in 1995.When introduced into the environment through landfill disposal or incineration, these heavy metals make their way into the food chain. The presence of these heavy metals in the food chain presents very serious consequences. The possible health effects associated with ingestion or inhalation of heavy metals through water, food, or air include headaches, abdominal discomfort, seizures, and comas. Additionally, several heavy metals, such as cadmium, are known carcinogens.

I found the closest drop off site through rbrc.org, the Radio Shack at 1001 Market, in The Gallery. The Gallery is the most ghetto mall in the entire universe. I knew I should have called and asked before going. After trekking all the way up there, I found out that they don’t actually have a drop off for rbrc. Why does doing the right thing have to be such an huge effort? On January 25th, I decided to write an email:

Hello,I went to the Radio Shack at 1001 Market Street in Philadelphia today to drop off a nickel cadmium battery. I was informed that they do not have a drop off or any kind of recycling program at that location. I then referred to your site, and the listing, to a RadioShack employee. He said he was aware of the listing because several other people had come in with the same story. I had a feeling I should have called before I went, but still, it was disappointing. I just wanted to let your organization know, so you can either update your listings or actually make it a drop-off location.Know that I will seek out another place to recycle my battery. Thanks for all that you do.Sincerely,miss koco

As of today, the listing is still wrong, but luckily I was able to drop off my battery at the Verizon located at 1115 Market a couple days ago. I called them before heading out and the guy actually knew what I was talking about.It really shouldn’t be such a task to recycle.

not easy trying to being green (part 2)

paper

Junk
item#:032a
material: paper
status: recycled

Another recycling irritation I’ve experienced came from trying to deal with all the paper waste I’ve accumulated. Despite the fact that I’ve opted to “go paperless” with all of my accounts and I’ve opted-out, I still get so much junk coming through my mail slot. IT IS INSANE.

I used to take all the material sent, including the original envelope, and stuffed it all in the pre-paid mailing envelope. I’d write on the front, “Don’t send me junk!” or something like that and then drop it in the post. I know, I know, probably not very effective, but it made me feel a little better.

Luckily, Philadelphia will accept all of this nonsense in their recycling program. The crazy part is how long it took me to find out what and when to recycle. The information architecture on their site is a disaster, it’s like impossible to find the most basic things. They think they’ve made it simple and understandable, but it’s not. Single-stream, dual-stream, blue week, green week. OY VEY!

Cell Phone

 2096 2215399062 B44197Cf7D Mitem#:013
date acquired: spring 2007
status: donated (2.06.2008)

My cell phone from Korea wasn’t anything close to the flashy superphone one would expect , but I like the story behind it. My first Korean phone died when I dropped it in a gigantic puddle. My second phone wasn’t that notable, and strangely enough (for me) I can’t even remember what happened to it. I do remember when I got the phone shown above though!
My job in Korea was just about the most ideal situation one could ever ask for. Of course I still complained from time to time, but it was great, particularly for the random perks. One of these perks came at the ten year anniversary of Samsung’s sponsorship of the university. They plopped 700 bucks in my account and a brand new 500 dollar pda cell phone on my desk. It had everything, it could do anything. In an iphone-less world it was like discovering sliced bread. The only thing it didn’t do: English. I asked my Korean tutor if he could help me sell it. And he did, for 450 bucks! Then I bought my co-worker’s old phone, but discovered that I couldn’t use it with my phone service, so I sold it to my student who wanted it for her mother, and in the end I got my final Korean phone from the friend of my tutor, who gave it to me for free, so I took them both, and my tutor’s girlfriend, out to my favorite vegetarian restaurant. Great fun.

Now I have no use for this phone, or the other old ones I’ve come across laying around in my house. I wasn’t sure if anyone could make use of my Korean phone here in the states, I’m so out of the loop on whether people even activate used phones. I wasn’t going to just throw them out, particularly after recently discovering how nasty these rechargeable batteries are. So, I decided to recycle it with T-Mobile per the recommendation of my dear friend Rose. Apparently, “100% of the net proceeds from handset recycling now benefit the charitable efforts of the T-Mobile Huddle Up program.” From the info and pictures posted here and there, it looks like they are doing some good stuff for kids and communities. Fabulous.

I do have one complaint/comment regarding this recycling program adventure. From the site, I found a bunch of T-mobile locations near my home, but only the corporate locations accept the used phones for donation. In all of the three locations I visited, including the last one where they finally took my phones after consulting managerial staff, employees were all surprised that T-mobile even had a recycling program. None of them had even heard of it.
Disappointing.


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