Just a few years ago, this place was called
Dumptown. For years, the folks living here hadn't thought much about where waste
went when they threw it out. And, eventually, that became a very BIG
Because Dumptowners didn't know what happened to waste after it
was thrown away, they thought nothing of dropping empty soda cans here and there
or putting cans of leftover paint right into their trash cans.
Things that easily could have been reused or recycled were tossed
in the trash, because nobody believed recycling made a difference. At the dump,
they threw dangerous chemicals and poisons (hazardous waste) into the regular
garbage (solid waste).
The garbage heap grew and began to smell. Sometimes it caught
fire, sending toxic smoke into the air and making it hard for everyone to
breathe. Dumptowners tried moving away from the mess, but wherever they moved,
the problem was still there?on the ground and in the air. They knew they had to
They learned to reduce the amount of waste they threw away. For
example, they bought items at the store that weren't wrapped in extra packaging,
so there would be less to throw away. They learned to reuse other things?like
washing out empty jars instead of throwing them away. And, they learned to
recycle. They set up bins around town to collect glass, paper, and aluminum that
could be converted back into raw materials, then made into new products.
Dumptowners paid special attention to hazardous waste and set up
special collection points where people could drop off used chemicals, paints,
and cleansers for safe handling and proper disposal. Instead of buying
environmentally harmful cleaning products, chemicals, and pesticides, many
Dumptowners switched to natural, safe substitutes.
Finally, they closed the old city dump and built a new solid waste
landfill outside of town. With the town's new image, it needed a new name, and
Recycle City was born. Travel around Recycle City and find out what folks here
are doing to reduce waste and make the environment better.
To get started, just click on any section of Recycle City that you
want to explore, or click on the Dumptown Game. Create your own Recycle City
scavenger hunt or go to the Activities area and see other ways you can put
Recycle City to use.
When you leave this place you'll leave knowing much more about
what you can do to help protect the environment. Have fun!