Habitat for Humanity Winona-Fillmore Counties and the Habitat ReStore were proud to celebrate America Recycles Day on Friday, November 15. This national holiday recognizes the importance and impact of recycling on the economy and environment.
Since its doors opened in Winona in 2003, Habitat ReStore has diverted a total of 3,693,973 pounds from the landfills in the community!
Habitat for Humanity and Habitat ReStore seek to share the belief that everyone should have a decent place (and a decent Earth) in which to live.
Industrialized recycling has been around for hundreds of years. America first began manufacturing recycled paper in 1690 when a Pennsylvania mill made paper from cotton and linen rags.
In 1895, New York City mandated recycling and eliminated the previous method of dumping waste into the ocean. Household waste was now separated into three categories: food waste, rubbish, and ash. NYC Police Commissioner, Theodore Roosevelt, enforced the recycling law.
In 1904, the first aluminum can recycling plants were opened in Cleveland and Chicago. Aluminum can be used for any product that needs a strong lightweight material or a material to conduct heat. Aluminum can be recycled and reused indefinitely without weakening.
In 1955, Life magazine printed an article called “Throwaway Living.” Consumers were convinced that single-use items were necessary for modern life, and ease and convenience became the two most desirable qualities in product marketing. By 1960, the recycling rate was less than seven percent.
In 1970, Earth Day was introduced to bring America’s attention to the problem of increasing waste and the importance of recycling.
Almost 50 years later, Earth Day is celebrated by over 190 countries and the current rate of recycling is up to 35 percent. An EPA study found that every 10,000 tons of materials recycled supports nearly 16 jobs and $760,000 in wages.
The Habitat ReStore sells gently-used and new building materials donated from local manufacturers, stores, contractors, and individuals. Not only does this divert reusable material from the landfill, but it provides our community with affordable home-improvement materials and furniture. Any items unable to be sold are broken down and sorted into recyclable metals.
About Habitat for Humanity Winona-Fillmore Counties
Founded in 1994, Habitat for Humanity Winona-Fillmore Counties is a nonprofit organization that works toward a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Open to the public, the ReStore supports affiliate operations by selling new and gently used building materials. Habitat for Humanity is dedicated to eliminating substandard housing locally and worldwide through constructing, rehabilitating, and preserving homes. The office is located at 126 North Baker Street, and the ReStore is located at 900 West Third Street, Winona. For more information, call 507-457-0003 or visit us online at www.habitatwinona.org.