Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Speak up for Community Recycling Bins and the Plastic Bag Ban

A number of important developments are in the news concerning Oahu's waste stream. You can voice your opinion to the Mayor and City Council regarding the community recycling bin program and the bill to ban plastic bags. Save our incentives for Waste Reduction!

Are you keeping up with Oahu's latest trashy developments?
  1. A debate is brewing about where to place Oahu's next landfill and the growth of HPOWER. But where is the public discussion about waste reduction and recycling? 
  2. The City and County of Honolulu will be placing signs on community recycling bins around Oahu this weekend to notify the public that it is ending its white community bins program and renewing efforts to expand curbside and condo recycling. How will the end of the community bins affect you or your school? How can we improve our community recycling efforts?  
  3. The Honolulu City Council APPROVED Bill 10 last week that would prohibit businesses from providing nonbiodegradable plastic bags to their customers at the point of sale effective July 1, 2015 IF the mayor signs the bill.
Get involved and let your voice be heard... 
 *Save Community Recycling Bins
Please send in your support to the Honolulu City Council this morning to help keep Recycling at your school and/or keep the allocation of funding toward Recycling programs at schools throughout the island.

Here's some helpful tips from our partner Kanu Hawaii.
If the Community Recycling program ends, schools will lose an important source of community-supported funding. Since the start of the program, participating schools have received more than $1 million in returns for the cardboard, paper, and HI-5's collected in these bins. Many schools host monthly recycling drives that student activities clubs and after school programs rely on for funding.
  • Ending the recycling program sends the wrong message to the next generation of student stewards of the environment who have been learning and practicing recycling in their classrooms and homes.
  • The Community Recycling Bins are an important community resource. Have you used the white bins? Tell them why.
  • The White Bins provide community-supported funding for crucial after school programs, sports, and student clubs. This funding is especially important during a time when many creative and active programs in school are being cut from the curriculum due to budget constraints.
  • Thank them for their leadership and willingness to send a strong message that the City and County of Honolulu supports student and community efforts to reduce waste and is committed to recycling.
  • This budget allocation has support from Ann Kobayashi, chair of the Budget Committee, and Ernie Martin, chair of the City Council. They need to hear that the community supports this program in order to pass the amendment. Can you take 2 minutes now to send them an email?

    Testify in person this Thursday, May 10th at 9:00 am in the Council’s Committee Room in Honolulu Hale. Testimony can be faxed to 768-3827 or emailed above.  
    Link to Bill 14, CD1, FD1. Amendment List 22 under Refuse Collection and Disposal (third amendment from the top of the page)

    *Send Bag Ban Letters of Support to Mayor Carlisle by Wednesday!
    Mayor Carlisle said he'd review the bill and accept public input before making a decision on whether to sign it. Send a letter to Mayor Carlisle, urging him to sign the bill into law. Send your letter via fax 808-768-4242 or email mayor@honolulu.gov, or call the Mayor's office at 808-768-4141.

    Here is a sample letter you can use and personalize:  
    SUBJECT: Plastic Bag Ban, Bill 10 - SUPPORT
    Dear Honorable Mayor Carlisle, 
             Please support and sign into law Bill 10, an ordinance to prohibit businesses from providing nonbiodegradable plastic bags to their customers at the point of sale. Plastic ocean pollution is a global issue, with regional solutions. Hawaii's ocean-based economy is threatened by plastic bags that litter our beaches and streets and harm marine wildlife.
             Reducing single-use plastics is of utmost importance for the benefit our island and passage of this bill will positively impact the people, economy, wildlife, and environment of Hawaii.
          Maui, Kauai, and most recently Hawaii Counties have already passed ordinances to move towards this, and it's time for Honolulu County to do the same.
          Please sign Bill 10 to keep Honolulu green. Thank you for your leadership on this issue.


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