Schools have made $254,000 by recycling aluminum beverage cans

I*Recycle Guam has consistently helped generate funds for Guam's local schools through its aluminum recycling program. (PNC photo)

Long-time recycling advocate Peggy Denny continues to help Guam’s schools and the environment through the I*Recycle Program.

I*Recycle Guam has consistently helped generate funds for Guam’s local schools through its aluminum recycling program.

According to Peggy Denny, the program administrator for I*Recycle, since the start of the program in 2008, schools have made about $254,000 by recycling aluminum beverage cans.

Currently, 48 schools are participating in the program. Denny says that she has been doing everything she can to bring more aluminum cans to the school’s recycling bins, including spreading awareness of the matter through her weekly column.

According to Denny, her weekly column has sparked a great response in Guam’s community. Peggy says that she has received phone calls, emails, and text messages to help collect aluminum cans from Santa Rita to Yigo and has collected roughly 150-200 bags filled with aluminum cans.

In an interview with NewsTalk K57’s Patti Arroyo, Denny said that avoiding contamination is vital when selling to a company that only accepts aluminum beverage cans. Contamination happens when different kinds of recyclable materials are mixed into the bins solely meant for collecting aluminum beverage cans.

“The company we sell it to will only accept aluminum beverage cans. So, no aluminum foil or trays, Vienna sausage cans, or spam, or Mr. Brown, or any of that. That can all be recycled, but we sell them to a company that makes only aluminum beverage cans. All those other types of aluminum have different melting points, so it disrupts their process.”

Peggy says that a sure way people can tell if a can be placed into the recycling bin is to crush the aluminum between their hands. However, people are advised to refrain from crushing the cans, as it reduces the volume that goes into the bin and increases the weight, and there are no means available to weigh the bin when it is empty.

I*Recycle plans to expand the program, to have 60 schools participating ultimately. Twelve bins made of durable plastic will be brought in from the states for schools to use.

Denny also participated in Saturday’s island-wide beautification cleanup, monitoring the recycling bin in the cleanup’s central location, making sure all recyclable materials are correctly sorted. For more details on the I*Recycle program and how to get involved, contact Peggy Denny (671) 483-9415.