Thirty New Recycling Containers for BPS High Schools

posted Oct 3, 2018, 5:29 PM by Brittany Dabestani

East and West Graduates See Their Goal Achieved

September 12, 2018 – Green Bellevue announced today that 15 new recycling containers have been delivered to the two Bellevue Public School High Schools. They will be used during sporting and other events.  The green, co-branded recycling containers will be placed next to all trash containers to collect the high volume of plastic bottles that are purchased and discarded at the events. This initial contribution is expected to be the beginning of future improvements that will lower landfill waste from Bellevue Public Schools.      

The purchase of recycling bins has been a goal of the Green Bellevue Board of Directors for several years.  One of the founding members, Ruth Richter, said she has been aware of the need for recycling collection containers at the schools since her two high school-aged boys started elementary school.  “Providing recycling collection containers not only will lower the amount of recyclable waste that is going to the landfill, but it will also serve to students, showing that recycling is easy and better on the environment,” said Ruth Richter.  “Green Bellevue has been applying for grants and earmarking funds raised from the annual Sarpy Earth Day event for about four years,” Richter continued.   It wasn’t until recent graduates Lilly West and Kat Woerner joined the Board as student representatives (Kat attended West and started as a junior and Lilly joined the Board last year as a senior from East) that the project took a top priority.  Each student had been advocating for more recycling in their schools and were determined to ensure that the project was in process before they graduated.

Andy Severson, the newly hired BPS District Supervisor of Custodial Services, also played a key role in getting the recycling project underway.  “Andy has been great to work with, he really gets the need to step up the recycling collection and is ready to ensure that the carts will be well-used,” says Richter. The possibility of new carts was so well received that the group met on August 15th to discuss how many were needed for successful collection of recycling from the sports events, and to brainstorm on a successful implementation and oversight plan, and Green Bellevue received the go-ahead to place the order on August 22nd.  

The bins will be moved around at each school based on the sports calendar. Green Bellevue and Bellevue Public Schools are considering starting an application system for the schools to request containers, along with their plan to use the containers, to ensure there are enough to increase the success of the program.  Andy Severson will be sitting on the Green Bellevue board in the coming year as will Gillian Cromwell from Hillside Solutions – Green Bellevue plans to next address composting in the schools.