Standing on the second highest point in Kandiyohi County, 20 YES! students, coaches and staff learned they were standing on 100 feet of trash. The Kandiyohi County Landfill receives over 37 tons of garbage a year and over 3 million gallons of paint and stain waste. This makes the Kandiyohi County Recycling Center a vital piece of the solution to reducing the amount of waste going to this landfill.
At the Recycling Center students learned the county spends over $10,000 for each semi load of recyclables hauled away. Jay Baker, Recycling Coordinator suggested people should “buy stuff that is less toxic.” Students saw first hand how paint is emptied into large barrels to be shipped to Amazon paint to be made into new paint colors.
At New London-Spicer Schools YES! students learned how the high school is recycling milk cartons. Katelyn Larsen, a GreenCorps member with Recycling Association of MN (RAM) outlined best practices for milk carton reduction at schools. Katelyn pointed out that by recycling the cartons at NL-S, over 650 milk cartons a day are being diverted from the landfill!
Doug Lien from Tri-County Solid Waste entertained the group with colorful “trashy” stories. He made the point that over 50% of waste in schools can be recycled. Doug encouraged teams to always look to reduce waste first. Regarding milk carton recycling students were told to consider; 1) using a milk dispenser, 2) recycling cartons, and 3) composting the milk cartons.
A special thank you to Paul Carlson (superintendent) and Teresa Copley (YES! coach) at New London-Spicer High School for helping to host this YES! event.