ASU Community Partnerships Ongoing Environmental Organizing Programs
Plastic baling twine is a substance that often goes ignored within our communities, but has a very significant impact on our environment. This twine, used by agricultural entities to bind bales of hay and other fibrous material, is notable for the sheer quantity of the substance present in any agricultural area. ASU Community Partnerships estimates that the San Luis Valley produces up to 39 million feet of this substance annually, or about 13 tons, of this polyethylene plastic twine. Much of this goes to our landfills, adding significant amounts of material that will virtually never biodegrade. Twine will also impact our local wildlife, who can easily get tangled up in this substance as the wind takes it all over the place. Perhaps worst of all, many of our farmers will simply burn their twine, which, as an oil based plastic, releases toxic vapors and carcinogens into our air and soil, impacting all of our healths.
ASU Community Partnerships is consistently working towards ways to enable everyone in the San Luis Valley to help tackle the issue of plastic baling twine. Towards that end, we maintain the Everything Twine program, aimed at recycling the twine into usable products. Both in-house and working with local entrepreneurs, we facilitate the process of weaving this plastic baling twine into items that see normal everyday use, from rugs, to purses, to dog leashes and collars, and beyond. We seek to create a market-based approach to the issue of plastic baling twine, finding new markets for these twine products in order to reduce their negative environmental impact and keep them from harming us all.
If you'd like to be a part of the Everything Twine program, please feel free to contact us. For more information about what other Colorado communities are doing with their twine, please see the Fort Collins Conservation District's page on their program.
Since no San Luis Valley recycling center recycles plastic caps, ASU Community Partnerships collaborates with Aveda Corporation, Alamosa Recycling Center and local k-12 school to recycle plastic caps for the San Luis Valley community. Aveda Corporation has one of the few national recycling programs for plastic caps. ASU Community Partnerships has raised Valley community awareness of the problem and organized community members and organizations around the problem. The drop off sites: ASU Community Partnerships (corner of Main & Edgemont Streets)
ASU Community Partnerships developed the “Plastic or Planet?” program to raise consumer’s awareness about plastic bag consumption. The program is based on getting people into the habit of using reusable bags. Staff members have developed a marketing plan that is designed to remind people to “recycle, re-use and re-purpose”. Community Partnerships involves ASU student athletes and student clubs in this program. City Market in Alamosa has agreed to sell our reusable—100% biodegradable, fair trade bags at their store and offer a rebate for promoting use of those bags back to Community Partnerships. The effort provides funds that will leverage additional funding for environmental projects.
ASU Community Partnerships is partnering with a variety of companies to recycle or reuse techno trash, including old cell phones, cartridges and laptops. Techno trash boxes are located at Community Partnerships (corner of Main & Edgemont Blvd.).
To follow are useful links for items to recycle:
Computers: Southern Colorado Recycling
1405 Quartz Road
Pueblo, CO 81008
Off of I-25 on Eden Exit (exit 104). Call for more specific directions and hours.
Small fees are charged for recycling services.