West Columbia works to improve environment as Earth Day approaches

National Earth day is Thursday, April 22. A clean environment supports jobs, livelihoods, health, survival, and happiness. A healthy planet is a necessity.

From the West Columbia Clean-Up, Saturday.

Earth Day is a call to innovators, industry, investment leaders and influencers to work to find more solutions to protect the planet.

Earth Day 2021 comes after an effort from more than 270 volunteers in West Columbia to clean up their environment. 

Volunteers from church groups, scout troops and businesses picked up 2,640 bags of litter and 25 tires from the streets of West Columbia, Saturday. It was part of the City-Wide Litter Pick Up.
The city also works to encourage environmental awareness in other ways.

West Columbia Public Works Director Jaime Hook will speak to first-graders at Riverbank Elementary School, Thursday. He oversees the sanitation department’s recycling operations.

“We collect 65-to-70 tons of recycling a month,” Hook said. About 7,000 City of West Columbia Sanitation customers have 95-gallon roll carts that are emptied by city crews every other week. He said some households have two recycle containers and the city will give customers a second recycle roll cart if they request it.

Hook said the value of recycling is found in the fact that recycled items, that don’t biodegrade, are not placed in landfills to take up space. Recycled items are reused.

“We have a high rate  of participation in our recycling program,” Hook said. He also said it is important to recycle right.

“Water bottles, plastic, paper, cardboard and soup cans and aluminum cans are recyclable items,” He said. Co-hangers, and other metal items are not recycled in the city’s program.
Hook also advocates “clean” recycling. He said it is not a good idea to put dirty items in the recycle bin because processors will kick out items that are not cleaned.

Many Lexington Two Schools have Earth Day activities planned. Students are planting trees at Busbee Creative Arts Center as part of that statewide tree-planting effort. Students are picking up litter at Riverbank, according to Dawn Kujawa, Lexington Two Communications Director.

Earth Day was established in 1970 when air and environmental pollution were much more common and industries were less likely to practice clean policies.  
The country was ripe for an environmental initiative after an oil spill in Santa Barbara, CA and the Cuyahoga River in Ohio caught on fire.

Earth Day 2021 is a time when leaders are examining emerging green technologies and concentrating on protecting the world’s ecosystems.

More than a billion people in 192 countries now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world. Today, we invite you to be a part of Earth Day and to help further climate action across the globe.

Around the world, and in West Columbia, protecting our environment is a priority. Your effort to do your part is much appreciated.