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Sarah B. Jones: Thank you Routt County for recycling

Sept. 23 was the annual Community Recycling Drop-Off hosted by Yampa Valley Sustainability Council at the Meadows Parking Lot. Since 2010, this one-stop-drop event has become a fall ritual for residents to clear their clutter and make room for winter gear.

We would like to thank everyone who braved the rain to recycle on Saturday. This year, 624 residents participated — a 10 percent increase from last year and our largest participation ever. We know the lines were long, but we appreciate this community’s commitment to doing the right thing with their hard-to-recycle materials, especially electronics.

Don’t worry, we’re already working on ways to improve for the next event.

New this year, YVSC offered a commercial recycling option after the community event. Twenty-two businesses participated — from property managers to local nonprofits. Keeping valuable resources out of the landfill is truly becoming the norm in Routt County.

With the record-breaking participation came record-breaking numbers. Here’s the breakdown:

  • 624 households
  • 22 businesses
  • 97 volunteers ages 9 – 75
  • 19 recycling partners
  • .27 inches of rain
  • 42 degrees
  • 40,000 pounds of electronics
  • 103 pairs of skis
  • 5,075 pounds of paint and stain
  • 15,840 pounds of scrap metal
  • 78 mattresses
  • Plus bikes, light bulbs, yard waste and more.

If you missed the drop-off this year, you don’t need to hang on to that dusty computer, broken dishwasher, fragile CFL bulb or gunky paint until next fall. There are many local options for electronics, scrap metal, light bulbs, paint and other hard-to-recycle materials that are available year-round.

Please visit yvsc.org for our interactive A-Z Recycling Guide. We are constantly updating the guide to help you properly dispose of hard-to-recycle materials right here in Routt County throughout the year.

YVSC’s Community Recycling Drop-Off wouldn’t be possible without the help of our volunteers and many recycling partners, some whom came up from the Front Range to make the Community Recycling Drop-Off possible. We are so grateful for these dedicated folks who spent the whole day in the rain to help our community protect our environment.

As a nonprofit, YVSC also depends on community support to subsidize these recycling services. Thanks to all of you who donated on Saturday to support our work.

Thanks for recycling, Routt County. By keeping valuable resources out of the landfill, you are reducing our community’s collective carbon footprint and preserving what we all treasure about the Yampa Valley — our world-class snow, serene forests, pure air and clean water.

Sarah B. Jones

Yampa Valley Sustainability Council executive director