Listed below are recent posts across all of CalRecyle's blogs.
The holidays are upon us, and many of us are scrambling to find the perfect gift for the important people in our lives. Consider Mother Nature this year and give experience gifts instead. Packaging makes up about 25 percent of California’s trash, and swapping out just a few items on your list in favor of an experience gift can make a difference. Most experience gifts can be given digitally, which means little to no trash created in celebration of the holidays. Here are a few experience gift ideas that are budget-friendly and splurge-worthy.
With many streaming options available for in-home entertainment, it’s easy to stay in to catch the latest show. Opt for an evening out and consider taking a friend or loved one to see a classic movie on the big screen or a Broadway show.
Movie tickets will set you back about $10-15 per person, while theater tickets will likely start at $45 and go up from there. Take a bus or train and save on parking, gas, and greenhouse gas emissions.
Do you have an artist in your life? Plan a day at a local museum or art gallery for inspiration. Admission prices are usually $15 per ticket, but special exhibits may cost a few bucks more. If you’re feeling generous, buy an online painting or drawing class from a popular artist.
Skillshare.com has some great options.
Nothing brings people together like a nice meal. For a budget-friendly option, opt for dinner at a restaurant for $45-75. For the foodies in your life, splurge on a cooking class. Most grocery co-ops have cooking classes, and some popular restaurants offer them as well.
Classes usually start around $75 per person.
Pamper that special someone in your life with a fancy pedicure at a local salon. An upgraded pedicure may include aromatherapy, special scrubs and lotions, and a longer foot massage. If you want to go all out, consider a gift certificate for a spa day.
A luxurious level pedicure can range at between $45-100.
A massage, facial, and pedicure package will start around $200.
No matter your budget, you can usually find an eco-friendly way to show you care. If you do have gifts to wrap, consider sustainable gift wrapping like reusable gift bags or Furoshiki, the Japanese tradition of wrapping gifts in fabric. Check out our Reusable Holiday Wrapping blog for more tips!
—Christina FilesPosted on In the Loop by Christina Files on Dec 13, 2019
The U.S. EPA released new recycling statistics that illustrate that California remains a nationwide leader with a beverage container recycling rate year after year more than double the nation's average of 33%. Last year California recycled the second highest number of bottles and cans in the state's history.
Despite the recent decline in aluminum scrap markets, Californians continued to show their commitment to recycling with:
- A 76 percent recycling rate, recycling 18.5 billion beverage containers in 2018.
- A slight increase in the recycling rate from a 75 percent beverage container recycling rate in 2017.
- A continued high recycling rate in 2019, which is on track to recycle over 18 billion more CRV containers this year.
The average beverage container recycling rate for all US states in 2017 was 33.1 percent.
California’s 2017 beverage container recycling rate for all material types was 75 percent that year.
California is one of ten states with a beverage container deposit law (known as a Bottle Bill) to encourage beverage container recycling. The California Beverage Container Recycling and Littler Reduction Act was passed in 1986 to incentivize the recycling of plastic, glass, and aluminum bottles and cans. California recycles by far the largest number of beverage containers each year. We rank fourth in the nation in the percentage of beverage containers recycled, despite our unique challenges as the state with the highest population and the largest geographic area among the top ten states for beverage container recycling. We serve almost 40 million people with great geographic, cultural, and economic diversity.
State Population Recycling Rate (Beverage Containers) Recycling Volume
California 39.8 million 76% (2018) 18,588,304,236 Connecticut 3.5 million 50% (2018) 725,034,130 Hawaii 1.4 million 65% (2017) Not Publicly Listed Iowa 3.1 million 71% (2017) Not Publicly Listed Maine 1.3 million 84% (2017) Not Publicly Listed Massachusetts 6.9 million 57% (2017) Not Publicly Listed Michigan 9.9 million 91% (2017) Not Publicly Listed New York 19.5 million 66% (2016) 5,100,000,000 Oregon 4.1 million 81% (2018) Not Publicly Listed Vermont 626,299 75% (2017) Not Publicly Listed
Our department is working hard to ensure consumers have access to convenient recycling options and places to redeem their bottles and cans following the closing of rePlanet Recycling Centers, the largest recycling company in the state.
CalRecycle has expedited certification for 66 new recycling centers.
More than 50 recycling centers have opened since August 2019.
We will continue to work on multiple fronts to help more centers open in unserved areas, and to hold retailers accountable for their obligation to redeem CRV in areas not served by recycling centers.
Learn more about California’s Beverage Container Recycling Program at calrecycle.ca.gov/BevContainer. In addition to finding recycling statistics, and detailed information on the California Beverage Container Recycling Fund, local funding opportunities for innovative new models of CRV redemption, you can also find the nearest CRV redemption opportunity in your area.Posted on In the Loop by Lance Klug on Dec 10, 2019
Following a nationwide E. coli outbreak, recalled lettuce grown throughout the Salinas Valley is making its way back into the ground as compost, thanks to a California Climate Investment from CalRecycle. A new composting facility in Salinas has already started accepting more than 50 tons of the of the potentially tainted produce, according to the Salinas Valley Solid Waste Authority (Salinas Authority).
“It’s stretching our daily processing capacity,” Salinas Authority General Manager Patrick Mathews told United Press International. “It’s coming in by the truckloads.”
E. coli Outbreak Linked to Lettuce
In November, the Centers for Disease Control warned consumers not to eat romaine lettuce grown in California’s Salinas Valley after an E. coli outbreak sickened nearly 70 people in 19 states. The CDC, the Food and Drug Administration, and health authorities from various states continue to investigate the exact source of the strain while encouraging residents, restaurants, retailers, suppliers, and distributors to remove the product from their refrigerators, shelves, and distribution chains.
When sent to landfills, lettuce and other organic waste decomposes and generates methane, a short-lived climate pollutant 70 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Methane is emitted when organic material is buried and decomposes anaerobically, or without oxygen. The U.S. Composting Coalition encourages consumers and businesses to compost the recalled produce instead. The aeration of material in the composting process results in a different chemical reaction, producing far less damaging emissions.
“Industrial-scale composting … achieves the temperatures and holding times to eliminate human pathogens (like E. coli),” notes U.S. Composting Coalition Executive Director Frank Franciosi. “While you don't want to eat the romaine lettuce, there is no reason to put it in a landfill where it will generate methane, a significant greenhouse gas, and cause global climate change.”
CalRecycle’s Climate Change Funds for Composting
Reduce Greenhouse Gases in the Air
With the help of a recent $1.3 million California Climate Investment grant awarded by CalRecycle, the Salinas Authority constructed an aerated static pile compost facility at the Johnson Canyon landfill in Monterey County. Formerly, wood and green materials were chipped at a landfill and shipped as mulch or to a biofuel facility, while food was disposed of in the landfill. The Salinas Authority built its new, fully permitted composting facility this summer. In the fall it began turning green materials and food into compost. The Salinas Authority estimated it would compost 132,000 tons of food and green waste by 2026.
Compost increases soil carbon content and increases its moisture-holding capacity, enabling it to literally pull CO2 out of the air. California law mandates composting facilities process materials at temperatures high enough to kill E. coli and other pathogens.
Funding Available for Organic Waste Recycling
CalRecycle’s Organics Grant program is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving human health and the environment—particularly in disadvantaged communities.
Learn more about CalRecycle’s funding opportunities at calrecycle.ca.gov/funding. You can also subscribe to CalRecycle’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Grant and Loan Programs Listserv.Posted on In the Loop by Lance Klug on Dec 5, 2019