I feel like the town I grew up in, for a small town in Maine (pop. ~ 6,000), was pretty progressive when it came to recycling. They even charged people 2.00 a trash bag, which caused people to be less likely to throw away what could be recycled. For my undergraduate college years, I stayed in the New England/ Canada area and always experience people and towns who embraced recycling. Then, I move to Arkansas, where I am completing my graduate studies, and was opened up to a whole new world... one without recycling.
When I arrived in Arkansas, one of the first questions I asked my landlord was where the recycling center was. She did not even laugh, just stared at me blankly. So, I explained further what I was talking about. Then she did laugh!! Luckily though, she was able to tell me of the place in town that would recycle cardboard and bottles. This was better than nothing.
My next step was to ask where recycling was on campus. I had never been to a campus without recycling!! This was definitely my first. After trying to get people to start up recycling, I became known as the recycling Nazi to the other graduate students. The first day I met one of the graduate students, who happens to know be one of my closest friends, she went to throw some paper in the trash and I was appalled. If you can picture that slow motion cartoon where someone jumps across the room to stop something yelling "NOOOOOOO!" then you can picture what she was seeing. She has made fun of me ever since this episode, but she does recycle!
If you get a chance, go check out VerdantViolet's blog because I noticed that she had a guest blogger write a really cool blog about recycling. She found herself in a similar situation as mine and decided to reduce her recycling. You can check that out by following this link:
I invite you to leave comments and would love to hear your experiences with recycling! More green whispers soon to come! :)