Category Archives: reduce reuse recycle

Important Information Regarding Recycling Collection

We are in the midst of the worst recycling environment which we have seen in the last 20 years and all indications are that the market for recycling materials will not improve in the foreseeable future.  You may have read about the restrictions placed by China on importing recyclable materials from the United States.  China has closed its doors to many types of recycling materials and is requiring that the material be free from contamination.

China was the largest consumer of US recyclable volume and no longer is purchasing the volumes that it did in the past.  This means that there is a glut of supply in the market which is significantly driving down the value of this materials.  As a result, in many cities across the nation, recyclables are ending up in landfills.

We ask that all residents keep the following do’s and don’ts in mind when recycling:

Recycling Do’s and Don’ts

  • DO remember the first of the 3Rs of recycling: Reduce. Make every effort to reduce the amount of waste that you produce.  Single-use plastics are a significant component of that waste stream because they “don’t go away and essentially, last forever.  Make every effort to eliminate single-use items such as plastic grocery bags, straws, utensils and cups, bottled water, take-out containers…   Use reusable versions of those products instead.
  • DO recycle all empty bottles, cans, paper and cardboard.
  • DO recycle clean materials: i.e. keep foods and liquids out of recycling.
  • DO keep plastic bags out of recycling.
  • DO check out this site for more information about how you can do your share to Reduce | Reuse | Recycle.
  • DON’T bag your recyclables. Plastic bags and film get tangled in the machinery.  (Our local supermarkets have plastic bag collection bins at their entrances.)
  • DON’T include soiled food items. They can turn an entire load of recycling into trash.
  • DON’T add sharp or dangerous materials like needles and electronics. They can cause injury to workers.
  • DON’T include bulky items like propane tanks or construction debris (no wood). The Township Convenience Center at 136 Scotch Road will take a lot of materials that you cannot leave at the curb.  Please check our website or call 609- 882-3382 for accepted materials.
  • DON’T add items that are not on the list of accepted materials. This will contaminate the entire load.

We thank you for your anticipated cooperation and efforts to reduce our community’s impact on the environment.  If you have any questions please don’t hesitate the Township’s Recycling Coordinator, Tom Elder at 609-882-3382 X 6404.

View the Announcement

MCIA Hazardous Waste Collection and Electronics Recycling Event on Saturday, June 2nd.

The MCIA will be running its second Household Waste and Electronics Disposal Day of the year on Saturday, June 2nd from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.  It will be held at John T. Dempster Fire School, Lawrence Station Rd in Lawrence Twp.

Accepted for recycling are the following:

Aerosol Cans | Used Motor Oil |Propane Gas Tanks | Pesticides & Herbicides | Car Batteries | Paint Thinner | Oil Based Paint | Stains & Varnishes | Gasoline | Anti-Freeze | Driveway Sealer | Insect Repellents | Mercury | Fluorescent & CFL Bulbs | Computers | Printers | Copiers | Fax Machines | Stereos | Televisions | Microwaves

Materials Not Accepted:

NO LATEX PAINT | NO Heating Oil | NO Infectious Waste| NO Radioactive Materials NO Explosives or Munitions | NO Railroad Ties | NO Asbestos | NO Tires | NO Wood  | NO Fencing | NO Air Conditioners | NO Helium or Oxygen Tanks | NOUnknowns

For Mercer County Residents Only. Only Residential Waste will be accepted, i.e. no Commercial Business waste. Proof of Residency will be required (Driver’s License). For more information call 609-278-8086 or visit WWW.MCIANJ.ORG.

Township Plans Recycling Double Header on Saturday, April 28th

Shred Day for Your Sensitive Documents

Dispose of your sensitive documents safely and securely at Ewing’s first Shred Day of the year, Saturday, April 28th from 9 – 1 at the Municipal building.  Document shredding will be done on site.  This service is for Ewing residents only and proof of residency is required.

The Ewing Green Team will be on hand to assist.

Date: Saturday, April 28th
Time: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Location: Municipal Building, 2 Jake Garzio Drive.

National Take Back Day

If your medicine cabinet is filled with expired drugs or medications that you no longer use, and you are concerned about detrimental environmental effects from improper disposal or eliminating the potential for abuse of medications, here is the information that you need to properly dispose of them.

The Ewing Police Department will be participating in the DEA’s twice yearly National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day which will take place on Saturday, April 28, 2018, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. This is a great opportunity for those who missed the previous events, or who have subsequently accumulated unwanted, unused prescription drugs, to safely dispose of those medications.  Just go to Ewing Municipal Building, 2 Jake Garzio Drive and go to the Ewing Police Department on the lower level.  Ewing Police will have an officer between 10 and 2 to take the items.

All medications are accepted, prescription and over-the-counter, as well as liquids.  Liquids are accepted in their original prescription bottle only and with the cap tightly secured. Syringes and other sharp instruments should not be turned in at this event.  Hypodermic needles are not accepted.  The disposal is handled completely securely; all accepted medications with any labels that you leave on the containers are placed in a large cardboard box, lined with plastic.  At the end of the day the contents are taken to the prosecutor’s office.  The DEA will pick up and incinerate.

Guidelines for Drug Disposal

Follow any specific disposal instructions on the drug label or patient information that accompanies the medication. Do not flush prescription drugs down the toilet unless this information specifically instructs you to do so.

If no instructions are given on the drug label and no take-back program is available in your area, take them out of their original containers and mix them with an undesirable substance, such as used coffee grounds or kitty litter — to make the medication less appealing and unrecognizable — then put them in a sealable bag, empty can, or other container to prevent the medication from leaking or breaking out of a garbage bag.

You should also remove any identifying information on the label to protect your identity and privacy.

Despite the safety reasons for flushing drugs, some people are questioning the practice because of concerns about trace levels of drug residues found in surface water, such as rivers and lakes, and in some community drinking water supplies. However, the main way drug residues enter water systems is by people taking medications and then naturally passing them through their bodies.  That said, the FDA does not want to add drug residues into water systems unnecessarily. The agency reviewed its drug labels to identify products with disposal directions recommending flushing or disposal down the sink. This continuously revised listing can be found at FDA’s Web page on Disposal of Unused Medicines.

National Take Back Day Information

Date: April 28, 2018
Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Location: Ewing Municipal Building, 2 Jake Garzio Drive

If you are unable to participate in the National Take Back Day event there is a Project Medicine Drop Box outside of Police headquarters where you may drop off medications 24/7.  For more information see the Project Medicine Drop Box page on the Township’s website.

Hazardous Waste Disposal Day – Saturday, April 7th

The MCIA will be running its first Household Waste and Electronics Disposal Day of the year on Saturday, April 7th from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.  It will be held at John T. Dempster Fire School, Lawrence Station Rd in Lawrence Twp.

Accepted for recycling are the following:

Aerosol Cans | Used Motor Oil |Propane Gas Tanks | Pesticides & Herbicides | Car Batteries | Paint Thinner | Oil Based Paint | Stains & Varnishes | Gasoline | Anti-Freeze | Driveway Sealer | Insect Repellents | Mercury | Fluorescent & CFL Bulbs | Computers | Printers | Copiers | Fax Machines | Stereos | Televisions | Microwaves

Materials Not Accepted:

NO LATEX PAINT | NO Heating Oil | NO Infectious Waste| NO Radioactive Materials NO Explosives or Munitions | NO Railroad Ties | NO Asbestos | NO Tires | NO Wood  | NO Fencing | NO Air Conditioners | NO Helium or Oxygen Tanks | NOUnknowns

For Mercer County Residents Only. Only Residential Waste will be accepted, i.e. no Commercial Business waste. Proof of Residency will be required (Driver’s License). For more information call 609-278-8086 or visit WWW.MCIANJ.ORG.

Reduce | Reuse | Recycle – The EGT’s Mantra for Greening the Season!

evergreenThe end of the year holiday season has arrived at last. It is a wonderful time for gathering together to celebrate the richness of life with family and friends. But somehow, these worthy celebrations have been hijacked by the retail establishment turning the end of the year into a frenzy of shopping for gifts and overconsumption. This excessive consumption can not only be stressful and financially burdensome, but also takes a significant toll on the environment.

How much of our overconsumption normally ends up in landfills? Then think about the additional amount of waste we create during the entire holiday season from the paper, cardboard and plastic wrapping and shipping products that are used in abundance, to the disposable dishes, plastic cups, bottled water, excess wasted food… The list goes on. The Ewing Green Team has collected an extensive list of suggestions for reducing, reusing and recycling to green your holiday season. We hope that there are suggestions here for everyone.

The Holiday Greeting Card

  • Send out e-cards instead of mailing them. This will save some trees, reduce the greenhouse gas emissions created while delivering them and more. It will even save $$!
  • Cut back. Send your mailed holiday greetings only to those family and friends who truly will be glad to receive them.
  • Wish someone a happy holiday by phone instead of sending them a card. It will make their day to be remembered with a personal connection!
  • Cut up and use the cards that you received last year as tags for your gifts this year!
  • Look for a higher percentage of recycled content for any cards that you do purchase.

Gift Wrap

Wrapping paper is a major and expensive source of waste. Here are a number of suggestions for greening your wrapping styles.

  • Decorate with live greens from your yard instead of bows.
  • Put gifts in reusable packaging, such as baskets, bags, or fabric wrappers. Who can’t use an extra basket?
  • Just use a ribbon for an oversized object or make it the object of a treasure hunt.
  • Be creative in your gift wrapping approach. Eschew the store bought wrapping with these suggestions from tree hugger.com or check out Pinterest for their DIY eco-friendly gift wrapping suggestions.
  • Reuse gift wrap that you already have (the gift bags that are so popular in the stores are perfect for that!)
  • Wrap gifts in old maps, newspaper, brown paper grocery bags or kids’ artwork. Almost any paper you have around the house is capable of being creatively repurposed.
  • Don’t for get to save any bows and bags you already have for reuse. Save them for next holiday season to keep excess items out of the waste cycle.

Reusable Bags

  • Don’t forget to bring your own shopping bags as you shop. You can do this most of the year. It really does get easier to remember!
  • If you forget your own reusable bags, consolidate purchases into one bag rather than using several.

Be More Energy Efficient

  • If you plan on updating your holiday lighting, purchase more energy efficient LED light strands instead. These are long lasting and will decrease your energy consumption by 80-90 percent!
  • Don’t forget to put lights on timers while you’re away for both safety and energy reduction.
  • When hosting a party, lower the thermostat. The bodies in the room will quickly heat up the room.
  • Recycle your old inefficient holiday lights at Holiday LEDS.

Gift Giving

Change your gift giving focus. How many unused gifts do you have hanging around in your closet? Donate those items to local charities. Or, better yet, instead of giving unneeded gifts to someone who already has plenty, gift them with a donation to their favorite charity in their name.

  • Give the gift of an experience: from tickets to the theater or a sporting event, to music lessons, to a gift certificate for a massage. Experiences make memories and you don’t have to wrap the gift.
  • Give a gift that helps someone go green. I’ve given reusable stainless steel drinking straws and water bottles, as well as reusable bags. Additional suggestions could include energy-saving power strips (think of all of those appliances that are constantly on…)
  • If you plan to gift with an electronic purchase be sure to look for consider the energy efficiency of your choice. Look for Energy Star rated models from the EPA.
  • Give creatively of things that require little or no packaging. Give the gift of your time i.e. cooking, babysitting, or gardening…
  • Purchase locally if you can. You will use less gas and support your local economy.
  • Don’t forget to unsubscribe! How many of those catalogs that you received in the mail this year did you actually purchase from? And, you can look at their products online. Use Catalog Choice to cancel nearly all catalogs in one location.
  • Shipping – don’t forget to reuse packaging and shipping materials. And drop off extra peanuts at local shipping companies (check out our list here).

The Holiday Greens

Choosing between an artificial tree and a real tree can be a difficult decision. Here are some things to consider while decorating for the holidays.

  • Get a tree that can be planted or mulched afterward that is native to the area. Check out the Ewing Environmental Commission’s article on Christmas tree care.
  • Make your own wreaths and table centerpieces using materials from your yard or around your home.

Holiday Food

Eat more sustainably sourced food. Buy from your local farmers. Buy organic if you can. Food that hasn’t been grown or prepared using antibiotics, growth hormones, chemical fertilizers and pesticides is better for you and the environment. Consider meat that has had humane living conditions prior to slaughter. Green your meal with more vegetables. There are a number of community supported agriculture (CSA) program in our area. Consider giving a membership them.

  • So much food is prepared during the holidays and much of it is in excess of what is actually needed. Try to estimate actual head counts more accurately to eliminate excess food waste.
  • Aim for a Zero- Waste event by eschewing the disposable dishware and utensils, eliminating excess packaging by serving food in large containers instead of single-servings, providing bulk water, coffee and drinks instead of individually packaged products, serving bite-sized or finger foods to minimize plate and utensil use.
  • If you absolutely must use disposable products, make sure that they are made from recycled or compostable materials.
  • Don’t forget that you can compost your vegetative food waste all year long.

Travel

  • Encourage and participate in carpooling to and from holiday celebrations.
  • Make sure your tires are fully inflated to achieve optimal gas mileage while traveling.
  • Turn down your electric and gas water heaters to conserve energy and gas while you are away.

Happy Holidays from the Ewing Green Team!