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A Note from Jane

We all want a healthy environment. But as a society, we continue to struggle to find long term sustainable solutions. The Environmental Education Association of SC (EEASC) has many suggestions for easy everyday actions that can make a big difference.

Want to show your love for Environmental Education this Valentine’s Day?
  • Invite an EEASC member to talk to your group about an environmental topic: air, soil, water, energy, waste reduction or recycling. Contact Jane Hiller for a list of available speakers.
  • Sponsor the Southeastern Environmental Education Conference, which will be held here in Columbia in September.                                                                
  • Donate a silent auction item for the September conference.
Happy Hearts Day!

Jane Hiller
Education Director, Sonoco Recycling

Valentine Wishes and Welcome

Sonoco Recycling has been fortunate to have excellent leadership over the 30 plus years we have been sorting recyclables at our Material Recovery Facility (MRF) here in Columbia.

Our staff is sending valentine wishes to all three of our past managers: Bobby Hall, Steve Hall and Brian Shea. Brian recently moved to Washington state to manage a manufacturing facility. We are now excited to welcome our new plant manager, Fred Johnson, (pictured below) who came to us from Sonoco Recycling in Atlanta. Fred has already earned a valentine from our staff too.

Sustainable News

Valentine chocolate should
be “shade grown”

According to Green, growing cacao trees beneath native canopy trees enhance environmental sustainability by protecting water and soil, retaining habitat for birds, insects, and other wildlife, and providing other products for farmers. Leaf litter under tree canopies helps the soil retain moisture and fertility and provides habitats for insects that pollinate cacao trees. Birds and other animals help keep insect pest populations down, which reduces or eliminates the need for pesticides that are harmful to wildlife and people.

Growing cacao along with other crops such as avocado, pineapple, coffee, papaya, and bananas can increase biodiversity, helping fight off pests and plant diseases and provide additional income for farmers.

Check out some top-ranking sustainable chocolate companies

Did You Know?

Valentine plants may be a better choice than cut flowers
Gardener’s Outpost in Columbia recommends some plants and shares tips on caring for them. Thyme, lavender, rosemary, sage, yarrow, St. John's Wart, lambs’ ear and coreopsis can all be enjoyed inside with enough indirect light and fertilizer to keep their foliage lush. Experts recommend adding a watering routine to your calendar since consistent watering habits will limit brown spots on the foliage and make for very happy plants until night temperatures are warm enough to move them outside to the garden.

Families Show Love to Other Families and the Planet

Hundreds of people shared holiday love by donating gifts to Families Helping Families. In return, some volunteers (pictured to the left) showed their love for the planet by recycling a trailer load of cardboard boxes they accumulated during their collection.

We Love Public Art

We especially love art that inspires us to keep our city clean. The mural pictured below by artist Slim Glee has recently been expanded. Stop by the new Riverwalk extension on Candi Lane to enjoy this splash of color, funded by PalmettoPride. If you have a public space in your county or town that would benefit from a mural, apply today for the Love Not Litter Grant. The space must be in a public area and the mural must go directly onto an established wall or building. Email for more information.

Upcoming Events 

Lexington County grants available for septic system owners in the Congaree Creek watershed to get repairs or hook into a sewer line.
Contact: Mary Hite

Wine for Water annual fundraiser for Gills Creek Watershed Association
Details and tickets here.
Time: 5:30-8:30 p.m.

FEBRUARY 28 & 29
Regional Recycling Event at Riverbanks Zoo for residents of both Lexington and Richland Counties.
Details here
Time: 9:00a.m.-1:00 p.m.

Plan Ahead

Lexington County Rain Barrel Make & Take Workshop on April 20.
Contact: Mary Hite.

Deadline to pre-order rain barrels and compost bins from Richland County, City of Columbia and Columbia Water. For the March 28th pick-up day and free workshop for pre-ordered rain barrels and compost bins at Southeast Park.
Contact: Chenille Williams.
Copyright © 2020 Sonoco Recycling, All rights reserved.

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