ON ONE of the most weather-unpleasant Saturday mornings of the year so far, about 20 hardened residents, most of whom had been without power for 24 hours following the storm Eunice, braved the biting wind and driving rain to head out to Selborne Recreation Ground.
Why? Because they were attending the opening of his recycling plant, and this event was about trying to do something about climate change.
They were not only greeted with a lot of information, which had required considerable research, but also with additional ingenuity. They were soon rewarded with steaming cups of coffee and tea, as well as sustainable plant-based cakes.
Only one person admitted to coming hoping for a hot drink, promised and kept, and in return handed over several redundant pairs of glasses – some broken -, sunglasses and glasses cases, all now recyclable to playtime.
Two loyal members of the Recreation Grounds Committee, Sally Elborough and Polly Ravenscroft, had noticed that areas outside the East Hampshire District Council area were recycling materials that could not be recycled in their black bins.
They have carefully studied the situation, in particular where certain items could be recycled, reused or reconstituted, whether by local authorities, private companies or charities, and have produced a comprehensive plan.
With the approval of Selborne Parish Council, owners of the recreation ground, they have purchased four new colored bins, with labels clearly explaining the intended contents, which now line up against the recreation ground pavilion.
These four bins can only hold certain specific items that are not currently recycled by East Hampshire District Council, and if people put them in the black bins, that likely means all the contents will go into the incinerator. rather than in recycling units.
This totally defeats the purpose of recycling and contributes greatly to the carbon emissions that are warming the planet and threatening so many species and places.
Polly and Sally, along with some new volunteers, will check and bring the contents, which must be clean and dry, to the appropriate places for recycling.
Items this particular program can recycle include soft plastics, such as pet food pouches – which should be washed thoroughly – plastic bags and plastic wrap, and hard plastics, such as yogurt cups. and food trays, but nothing black.
Most dental necessities can be recycled – any brand of toothpaste tube, cap and box, plastic toothbrushes, manual and electric heads, dental floss containers and the Hello brand of mouthwash container.
Recycling is a relatively new concept – although those of the later years were all introduced post-war to “manage and fix” – and it has been somewhat hampered by modern technology.
Indeed, new ideas and solutions are constantly being found and beleaguered local authorities cannot afford to keep changing the very expensive equipment that may be required to process such a range of items and materials. The public then often became confused or cynical and ignored the need for recycling.
This requires coordination and cooperation, but with the universal use of websites and general advertising, large corporations, schools playing an important role both through education and collection facilities, and charities local all help.
The sale of food products is a highly competitive market and it is very encouraging that the most responsible supermarkets are entering this field, not least because a large part of our purchases are made in such places and produce a large part of our waste, so it’s worth knowing who takes what.
The East Hampshire District Council website tells people exactly what they can and cannot put in their black bins and what can be recycled at the various Hampshire County Council councils around the East Hampshire.
For places that do not have a local program such as the one currently available in Selborne, people should ask their local parish or town council if they can do something similar.
What better way is there to make things better in these very dark times than to spring clean and retrain as much, making you feel happier about the cleanup. Collectors are delighted that the objects are reused, the associations receive funds and the planet is in the process of being restored.