Happy Recycling Day!
Today is America Recycles Day, promoting reduction and reuse of waste rather than landfilling or burning it.
There are events planned locally and across the country - a Severn school, for instance, is staging a contest to see who can build the biggest tower with catalogs and magazines collected for recycling.
While Maryland's counties and municipalities are recycling 39 percent of their solid waste, according to the state Department of the Environment, there's still room to do more. Howard County, for instance, recently launched a pilot program to compost food scraps, one of the first localities on the East Coast to do it, though it's established in some West Coast communities already. The county estimates that nearly a quarter of its waste now consists of food scraps.
Baltimore city's not ready to go there yet, but it did kick off a new foam recycling effort just this month, targeting another big waste component, by volume if not weight. City residents are invited to collect clean #6 polystyrene foam plates, cups, egg cartons and the like and bring them to the dropoff center at 2840 Sisson St. from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
(Howard County family saves food scraps for composting. Baltimore Sun photo by Barbara Haddock Taylor)