Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Making New Habits: OKC Recycling Firm on a No-Landfill Mission

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Making New Habits: OKC Recycling Firm on a No-Landfill Mission

Article excerpt

Cindy Tether's passion in life has intersected with a business that she says Oklahoma desperately needs.

Tether is owner of Red Earth Recycling, which launched its "zero landfill" mission a few months ago in a 30,000-square-foot space at 923 SW Fourth St. just south of Reno Avenue. Tether's goal is simple: Keep much more discarded stuff out of the landfill.

"Very little that we throw away is not recyclable," Tether said. "That knowledge is a huge curve in the industry. People just don't know or don't think about it. When you show them that we can recycle about 95 percent of what's in their trash cans, it makes big sense, not just in their brains, but in their pockets."

Red Earth recycles just about everything, except Styrofoam and glass, but Tether said she plans to add those services in the future. In addition to the better-known recyclable items like office paper, newspapers, aluminum cans and plastic bottles, Red Earth recycles carpet pads, cell phones, televisions, computers, metals, batteries and more.

For computer recycling, people can bring in their entire computer system and Red Earth breaks it down, destroying the parts that might contain sensitive information and taking out the recyclable pieces, such as metal, silver and plastic, and selling them to vendors. The only charge to the person dropping off the computer is for disposal of the monitor, which contains hazardous materials, she said.

Red Earth is lengthening its roster of clients, which includes everyone from hospitals and government agencies to industries and nonprofit organizations, Tether said, and she plans to contract for curbside recycling with cities.

In a company setting, Tether said Red Earth will work with an organization to determine what it can recycle, then make a plan to do it. For most clients, Red Earth will pick up the recycling, although individuals also can drop off items at the warehouse. …

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