Pitkin County and the City of Aspen are partnering with an award-winning recycling non-profit, called Blue Star Recyclers, that employs people with cognitive disabilities at a free community electronics recycling day at the landfill October 6. Electronics recycling day is an opportunity for homeowners to recycle materials that require special handling like televisions, computers, DVD players and cell phones.
Blue Star Recyclers, with locations in Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Denver, was founded in 2009 with a core mission to recycle electronics and other materials safely while creating local jobs for people with autism and other disabilities. Pitkin County contracted with Blue Star Recyclers in the spring of 2018 to handle all of its electronic waste and recycling business. The City of Aspen is underwriting the event at the Landfill.
“The City felt this would be a great way to introduce Blue Star Recyclers to the community while helping to divert broken and unwanted electronics from the landfill,” said City of Aspen Reduction and Environmental Health Specialist, Liz Chapman. “This is the second free electronics recycling day the City has funded this year. These opportunities are popular among citizens who would otherwise have to pay a fee to recycle their electronics,” Chapman said.
Up to 200,000 pounds of electronics are collected at the landfill for recycling annually. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, as much as 50 million tons of electronic waste is generated worldwide every year. It accounts for 70 percent of the hazardous waste deposited in the nation’s landfills.
“Electronic waste contains hazardous material and it is illegal in Colorado to dispose of electronic waste in landfills,” said Pitkin County Solid Waste Manager, Cathy Hall. “We love working with Blue Star to help create jobs for people locally with autism and other cognitive impairments who might struggle to find employment elsewhere,” Hall said.
Blue Star Recyclers has locations in Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Denver, and are seeking a fourth location in the Roaring Fork Valley.
The public is invited to Free E-Waste Day on October 6th at the Pitkin County Solid Waste Center from 9 am to 1:30 pm. Residents may drop-off their e-waste at no charge during this event. Businesses will be required to pay the e-waste recycling fee at the landfill. For more information on the event visit LandfillRules.com or at www.cityofaspen.com. Call Pitkin County Solid Waste Center at 970-429-2882 or City of Aspen at 970-429-1831 for more information.
Media Contacts: Liz O'Connell Chapman - City of Aspen Waste Reduction and Environmental Health Specialist - 970-429-1831
Cathy Hall - Pitkin County Solid Waste Center Manager - 970-429-2882