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NDEP hosting first ever Nevada Recycles Poster Contest

Recycling is a concept that is familiar to many but in a lot of cases, those who utilize recycling bins in their communities don’t understand the necessity of ensuring the items they are attempting to put into the recycling stream are entirely empty, clean and dry. Without these three factors, products such as plastic bottles, cardboard boxes, metal cans and more can be rejected by recycling facilities, meaning they will find their ultimate destination at the landfill despite efforts to recycle.

Raising awareness about the need for proper recycling is one area of focus for the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection, or NDEP. This state entity is dedicated to preserving and enhancing the environment and an entire department within the division is centered on educating residents both young and old on how to sustainably manage materials and how to reduce, reuse, recycle and replace.

This year, NDEP will be taking part in a national observance geared toward recognizing the importance and impact of recycling, which not only limits the amount of garbage that ends up at the dump but also helps conserve on resources used to manufacture the items used in everyday life, and youngsters across the state are invited to take part.

“In celebration of America Recycles Day on Nov. 15, Nevada’s K-12 students are invited to showcase their creativity and commitment to protecting our planet by participating in the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection’s first-ever Nevada Recycles Poster Contest,” a news release issued by NDEP on Sept. 14 reads. “The contest is open now through Oct. 18, 2021.”

Youth with artistic minds are encouraged to spend some time contemplating how they can best detail the proper preparation for materials that are to be recycled and put that vision to paper, giving others a visual display that will provide a positive impact on the environment while also giving the student the chance at a $50 gift card for themselves and a $100 gift card for their schools.

“To participate, students will need to create a poster that promotes the three essential steps that must be taken for recycling to be effective,” the news release states. These steps are, “empty, clean and dry.”

“Any item placed in a recycling bin should be: 1. Empty: the item has been emptied of its contents. 2. Clean: the item has been rinsed if needed. 3. Dry: the item has had time to dry before being placed in the recycling bin,” the release explains, going on to note, “Did you know that if any single item disposed of in a recycling bin is not ‘empty, clean and dry’, spilled contents may contaminate the entire bin? Items that are contaminated are not accepted by recycling centers, and must be discarded at the landfill. Based on residential and commercial sector data, Nevadans and area tourists throw away approximately 5.9 pounds of trash, per person, per day; that means approximately four million tons of trash enters a Nevada landfill each year. By following these three easy steps, ‘empty, clean and dry’, all Nevadans can do their part to keep materials in the reuse cycle and out of our landfills to help foster a clean and sustainable future for the Silver State.”

The Nevada Recycles Poster Contest is comprised of four categories, including kindergarten through second grade, third grade through fifth grade, sixth grade through eighth grade and ninth grade through 12th grade. There will be one winner selected from each category and winners will earn their own gift card as well as one for their school to help with the purchase of supplies.

Winners will also have their poster art featured on the Nevada Recycles website along with the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources social media channels, where their families, friends, neighbors and even strangers will be able to view and admire the creativity and talent that went into making the posters. What’s more, the winning posters will also be emblazoned on Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada’s buses operating in the southern part of the state, creating mobile billboards that will go even further in the mission of promoting recycling and sustainability efforts.

Poster submissions must be received by Oct. 18 at 5 p.m. Full contest rules and submission instructions can be found online at www.NevadaRecycles.NV.gov

For more information contact NDEP Education and Outreach Coordinator Skylar Jones at s.jones@ndep.nv.gov

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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