Entire county should have available recycling

Published 1:04 pm Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Thanks to the leadership of Robert Kelley, director of the Shelby County Environmental Department, and others in our community, countywide curbside recycling will be offered beginning October 1 by Waste Management. Kelley has worked for more than a decade to see recycling brought to our community. Recycling bins provided by Waste Management will be emptied every other week, no sorting required, for $5.06 per month. For recycling here or anywhere to be successful, it must be inexpensive, convenient, simple, highly promoted and offered city- and countywide; the new Waste Management contract accomplishes just that.

Countywide recycling is a tremendous step in the right direction for our community and the environment and those responsible for making this happen, from county leadership to local folks working behind the scenes, deserve our sincere appreciation. Our children and grandchildren should thank them, too. County leadership is rightly following the lead of other progressive communities in Shelby County, like Indian Springs, where residents have had curbside recycling available for some time.

Come October 1, just three communities in Shelby County, Calera, Columbiana and Vincent, will not offer residents curbside recycling. Leaders in these communities, elected or otherwise, should begin work now to have curbside recycling available to their residents by that same October 1 deadline. Other communities in Shelby County have already proven recycling initiatives can be successful, and it’s very unlikely you’ll hear anyone who will say they are ‘against’ recycling, making it a fairly non-threatening political issue.

A friend of mine recently told me any successful new initiative in a community requires one key ingredient to flourish: a passionate member of the community who will push the idea forward, gathering community support along the way. He’s right. Who will be those passionate leaders in Columbiana, Calera and Vincent who will work to see curbside recycling brought to their community?

Here’s hoping those community servants step forward soon.