Twelve locals recognized for recycling
It’s that tipping point when a person’s imagination or vision sparks an idea for how to make Mother Earth a little cleaner, a little nicer place to live and a sanctuary for humans and animals.
Recycle Utah is known for promoting sustainability and recycling in Utah and, Tuesday night, the non-profit organization recognized 12 individuals and organizations in Summit County that have gone the extra mile to support the green movement in Park City. The event was held at Miners Hospital last Tuesday in commemoration of America Recycles Day on Nov. 15.
The business Recycler of the Year award went to The Park Silly Sunday Market. Recycle Utah Community Outreach Director Lola Beatlebrox said the designers and directors of the market, Kimberly Kuehn, Jewels Harrison and Julie Doerr-Arenson, made it "truly the only zero-waste market in Utah."
She said these three women took the initiative to require each of the market’s vendors to use recycled goods and placed recycling bins along Main Street while the market was going on.
"This popular market has done everything to bring recycling into the public eye and their diligence has approached zero waste more than any other public Park City event," said A. Flint Decker, trustee of Recycle Utah and master of ceremonies, at the awards Tuesday.
Accepting the award for Kimberly Kuehn and Julie Doerr-Arenson, co-manager Jewels Harrison said the Park Silly Market’s compostable takeout food trays and colorful sorting bins allowed the market to recover 65 percent of its waste as recycling instead of trash, which is quite an accomplishment on a nationwide scale, let alone a local one, a press release states.
"They’re breaking ground here," Beatlebrox said. "It was inspiring."
The individual Recycler of the Year award was given to Brent Giles, director of operations of Park City Mountain Resort and director of environmental affairs for Powdr Corp. Giles has taken many initiatives to promote recycling at PCMR, Beatlebrox said, as well as other resorts in the United States and businesses in Utah.
"His initiatives to reduce the carbon footprint of PCMR have been breakthroughs, and one was breaking out the snow guns, which is going to save PCMR a lot of energy and water," Beatlebrox said.
Beatlebrox said Giles announced that PCMR will also be implementing a recycling program on the mountain, "which is huge," she said, because the resort "has a lot less accessible places [for recycling bins] than Deer Valley or The Canyons."
"[Recycling] on top of the mountain is a big step forward [for PCMR]," Beatlebrox said.
She also praises Giles for speaking out and educating other businesses in the community about recycling, as well as other Powdr Corp.-owned resorts.
"Brent has been going around the entire country to all the Powdr-owned resorts to initiate [recycling]," Beatlebrox said. "The main reason he received the award from us is because, every time I ask him to help us inform businesses about recycling, he says, ‘yes’ He’s been a guiding light for me [and businesses] to educate Park City about recycling."
Other organizations recognized include the Park City Sustainability Visioning Team and The Summit County Recycling Committee. Beatlebrox said, every year, an award is given to the city and the county.
"Park City is envisioning many sustainable practices that the city is going to adopt," Beatlebrox said of the Sustainability Team. "They’ve put recycling [bins] for the public on Main Street and they’re participating with the Recycle Utah task force to get merchants to recycle on Main Street."
The Summit County Recycling Committee was recognized for partnering with Recycle Utah to produce reusable bags made from totally recycled plastic materials for grocery shoppers to use in place of plastic grocery bags. Beatlebrox said the bags will be distributed to every grocery store on the east side of the county and can be bought for $1. The bags feature the Recycle Utah logo on one side and the "C.A.R.E." logo, which stands for "County Awareness of Recycling Every Day," the committee’s slogan, on the other side.
"The reusable bags with the C.A.R.E. and Recycle Utah logos are designed to address the extreme plastic bag problem at the Three Mile Canyon landfill," Decker explained at the ceremony. "If you saw the thousands of plastic bags carpeting the landfill, you would be quick to use this bag for all your grocery shopping."
"[The bags] are very, very durable," Beatlebrox said. "It’s more of a give-away program."
Beatlebrox said while the program is still new, she hopes people will eventually grow accustomed to using these bags daily.
"If we could ban plastic bags, I would be very happy, but our country is so
addicted to [them]," she said. "It’s about educating the people to use reusable bags and remembering to take them to the grocery store every time they go."
Other individuals recognized at the event include Lori Gardner, director of curriculum and instruction for Park City School District, and Ted Russell and Sparky Van Valkenburgh, two outgoing Recycle Utah board members.
Beatlebrox said Gardner received the teacher’s recognition award this year for her ongoing support of Recycle Utah’s education programs and for helping to publicize the organization’s new web-based environmental curriculum.
Jeramy Lund was named the new president of Recycle Utah’s Board of
Trustees at the awards ceremony.
"He has extensive financial experience, we need young, clear thinkers like Jeramy," Beatlebrox said. "He’s very excited."
Outgoing Board of Trustees President Diane Foster was also honored for
her years of service with Recycle Utah. As past president, she will continue to work with Recycle Utah as a member of the Advisory Committee, Beatlebrox announced in a press release.
For more information about Recycle Utah or to learn how to volunteer, visit recycleutah.org or call 649-9698.
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