Blount County telephone recycling contest kicks off

The 2011 Telephone Book Recycling Contest hosted by Keep Blount Beautiful has begun and lasts until Feb. 11. The 27 participating schools include: Alcoa Elementary, Alcoa Middle, Alcoa High, Carpenters Elementary, Carpenters Middle, Eagleon Elementary, Eagleton Middle, Fairview Elementary, Friendsville Elementary, Fort Craig Elementary, Heritage Middle, Heritage High, John Sevier Elementary, Lanier Elementary, Mary Blount Elementary, Maryville Christian, Maryville Intermediate, Maryville Middle, Middlesettlements Elementary, New Horizon Montessori, Porter Elementary, Rockford Elementary, Townsend Elementary, Union Grove Elementary, Union Grove Middle, Walland Elementary and William Blount High.

Keep Blount Beautifuil organizers say the program would not be possible without the sponsors: Spectra Recycling, Blount County Litter Grant Program, Blount County Sherriff’s Department, and Alcoa/Maryville/Blount County Landfill. “These sponsors share a commitment to recycling and preserving valuable community resources,” says a Keep Blount Beautiful press release.

Sponsors will be providing services and funds for cash awards. The amount of the awards will vary. The goal is to reward each school that recycles one outdated directory per student enrolled with $50. An additional bonus is available for each ton of used directories collected. The schools will be divided into two divisions: Division I will be schools with less than 600 students, Division II will be schools with more than 600 students. An award of $500 will be given to the overall school with the most directories per student enrolled.

To help, take phone books to your local school of your choice. Books can also be dropped at local recycling centers in the mixed paper bin and credit can be given to the school of your choice. Please send a count with the school you would like to give credit to and date of drop off to keepblo@earthlink.net or call 865-681-4809 by Feb. 11.

Last year, 22, 714 phone books were recycled in 2010, and $1,450 in prize money was donated to local schools. That is equal to 190 trees conserved and 11.25 tons of waste diverted from our community landfill.

Recycled phone books are made into useful products such as animal bedding, home insulation, bathroom tissue, cereal boxes, roofing shingles, and even new phone books.

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