A Simple Solution: Curbside Recycling

We’ve all noticed the stench of the landfill on the edge of town and we’ve all been warned of the effects of global warming, but the problems can seem so overwhelming that individuals often don’t know where to begin.

Luckily for Murfreesboro, People for a Better Tomorrow is making a difference and making it easier for all of us to do our part to protect and preserve our environment.

Started in 2000 by Ron Cook, PBT is locally operated to help simplify recycling for the community.

Forget about separate bins taking up room in the kitchen and monstrous stacks of newspapers, all Ron and wife Terri ask is that you throw it together in a tub or bag and place it at the end of your driveway, same as we do with trash cans on trash day.

For only $12 a month, the Cooks will provide your home with its personal recycling receptacle where you can toss glass, cardboard, paper, all plastics, newspapers, magazines, steel, ink cartridges?whatever you can find with that little recycling logo on the side or bottom. Together, they sort it, separate it and send it off to the appropriate recycling centers.

“If people use a service like this,” Ron explains, “it can have a major impact on society. Not only can many products thrown away every day be recycled into something else, but letting us take care of it uses less taxpayer money, lowers car emissions with fewer on the road and it helps individuals use less gas.”

And there’s always the ever-pressing issue of landfills, which crop up quickly and fill up fast. Terri thinks, “If everybody would just drive by a landfill, they’d realize the importance of recycling.”

Or smell it, at least.

Nothing can ruin a beautiful drive out to Walter Hill Dam or a game of golf on the nine-hole VA course like the stench of rotting trash on a hot and humid sunny day.

Over 180 million tons of trash are thrown out by Americans each year.

On average, each of us uses 600 pounds of paper per year. Over one billion trees are cut down yearly just to make enough disposable diapers used by new parents. These numbers are huge and it’s up to each of us to do our part. Recycling is one of the best ways to play a role in changing the current state of our environment.

In the beginning, only about twelve people took advantage of the service the Cooks provide, but that figure has grown now to more than 600!

“We want to make it simple for the community,” shares Ron. “We’ve made it cheap and easy so that those who want to do their part can.”

The price goes down two dollars a month if you pay by the year and you’ll get two months free for each friend you recommend that signs up for service.

“We have customers from eighteen to eighty years old, Republicans and Democrats, people in the nicest houses in the biggest neighborhoods and college students who pay sometimes with change,” Terri says. “It’s all about the desire to make a difference.”

It doesn’t get much easier than this, people.

Longtime customer Candice Vincent finds that her actual trash has diminished since she started.

“People don’t realize all the stuff that can be recycled: toilet paper rolls, spaghetti jars, juice boxes, all that junk mail. It really is amazing what people throw away,” she explains, noting that all of her Christmas trash went into the bin instead of piling up in the trash can like her neighbors up and down the street.

The Cooks are sensitive to the needs of the elderly and handicapped, working to help make recycling most convenient for the individual. PBT also works with other local business, gathering the goods everywhere from industrial warehouses to small private offices.

For more information, call Terri and Ron at (615) 977-6404 or visit pbtrecyle.com.


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