Wednesday, September 22, 2021
Sept. 22, 2021

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In Our View: Cheers & Jeers: Good recycling; bad company

The Columbian
Published:

Cheers: To Earth-friendly consumer options. By now, you’ve seen Waste Connections’ poster identifying what can’t go in your big blue recycling bin (or the glass bin). You may have taken your foam packaging to a designated location, dropped your plastic newspaper bags in the bin at the supermarket, or used Clark Public Utilities’ CFL light bulb exchange program. But there are still a lot of things, like those ubiquitous plastic clamshells, that are tough to recycle.

Now two new options are available locally. Seattle-based Ridwell offers front-porch pickup of hard-to-recycle items such as batteries, light bulbs, textiles and other items. Within the Vancouver city limits, Waste Connections has introduced Recycle Plus. Both are at extra cost to your standard garbage and recycling, but they offer options to consumers who want to minimize their contributions to the landfill.

For those who want to take it a step further, how about recyclable toilet wipes? As The Columbian’s Monika Spykerman recently reported, at least one Vancouver store, Kindred Homestead Supply, stocks rolls of cotton cloth meant for toileting needs. And a La Center entrepreneur, Therese Livella, has sewn what she calls Fuzzy Wizettes, which come in sets of 30 and have a cloth bag to hold the used cloths, all of which can be thrown into the washer. Note that these products are designed for No. 1; it’s best to continue to use conventional toilet paper for No. 2.

Jeers: To Republican congressional candidate Joe Kent. Kent, who recently received the endorsement of former President Donald Trump, is running to the right of incumbent Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Battle Ground, next year. So far, so good, at least if you like Trump’s brand of politics. But on Labor Day, he made a widely promoted campaign appearance with U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., who is under investigation for violating sex trafficking laws by traveling with and having a sexual relationship with a teenage girl. Kent should remember that people judge you by the company you keep.

Cheers: To Friday Night Lights. The return of football and other school sporting events and activities brings a welcome bit of normalcy into the lives of teenagers whose high school years have been nothing short of terrible. Yes, the coronavirus pandemic is in full swing, and it’s possible that games and events may have to be postponed or curtailed, but for now let’s embrace what we have.

Jeers: To some of the world’s most cold-hearted thieves. Local hospitals are near crisis mode, treating more patients than their buildings were designed to serve. That’s why Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center has set up a large overflow tent outside its emergency department. But on Saturday, someone stole the generator that could power essential medical equipment inside the tent. New, the generator costs $28,000, so its value as stolen merchandise may be worth a couple of grand to the thieves. Human life shouldn’t be that cheap.

Cheers: To recycling salmon. As The Daily News of Longview recently reported, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife frequently donates fish to food banks around Washington. In the coming weeks, for example, Northwest Harvest is set to receive 3,000 fall chinook from the Kalama Falls Fish Hatchery. The salmon returned from the ocean to the hatchery to spawn but are not needed. So they are harvested and sent to feed hungry people, who reportedly are delighted to get fresh fish along with the usual commodities. Later, the hatchery will have an estimated 16,000 coho to donate.

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