Are your community’s utility costs rising faster than revenues?
Are you afraid or unwilling to raise your rates?
How would you like to cut your utility’s energy bills by 10 to 40 percent or more?
- 30 to 60 percent of a municipality’s energy budget is spent on the treatment of water and wastewater.
- According to the U.S. Dept. of Energy, energy audits typically identify potential savings to the user of 10 to 40 percent, with 20 percent being the average.
- Over the next 15 years, the cost of electricity is expected to increase by 20 percent.
This video presents to those in small, rural communities who are responsible for managing and overseeing wastewater treatment systems - boards or other governing bodies, staff and decision-makers - opportunities for saving on energy costs (many opportunities in the video also apply to drinking water facilities). The video helps these leaders find and start implementing ways to make energy use at their facilities more efficient.
Energy-saving projects implemented now will have a compounding effect, meaning energy cost savings will continue to grow into the future.
This video is not meant to be a prescription for a full and comprehensive energy audit. Because facilities can vary widely, it is to your advantage to find a professional and experienced person to perform an energy audit and tailor its findings to the uniqueness of your facilities. RCAP staff across the United States are able to carry out energy audits for drinking water and wastewater facilities. Find the contact information your RCAP region at rcap.org/regions
Most of us know the great benefits of recycling. It helps reduce our use of raw materials. It helps to save our resources from being sent to landfills. And it even minimizes damaging greenhouse gases. But what you may not know, is how the entire process works.
This is the Story of Recycling.
In most communities, residents place all of their recyclables into a single container or cart. The recyclables are then collected, mixed in with other recyclables, and then hauled to a local Material Recovery Facility, or MRF.
Once the unsorted resources arrive at the MRF, it is loaded onto a series of conveyers to start the sorting process. First, non-recyclables are removed by hand. Then, the material goes through a series of vibrating screens to isolate the cardboard and paper. From there, different types of paper are sorted by machines, and then hand, until they are baled. Meanwhile, while the paper is carried away, glass falls under the screens into glass crusher. Once crushed, the glass is carried out of the facility on a series of conveyor belts, and is dropped into a bunker or large container outside the MRF. At the same time, the rest of the resources continue along another conveyer belt where steel and tin cans are removed using magnets. Next, optical sorters are used to identify plastic bottles and blow a gust of air to separate them. Lastly, an eddy current isolates the aluminum. Now sorted, the separated materials are baled, and sent to reprocessing facilities.
Paper is sent to a paper mill, where it is pulped, screened, cleaned, spun, pumped, pressed, wound, divided, and packed into reels.
Aluminum is shredded, formed, heated, mixed, cooled, rolled, and ready to be made into more can in as little as six weeks.
And finally, plastic bottles are cleaned, scanned, sorted, shredded, melted, reformed, and remade into into t-shirts, plastic bags, or more bottles.
With the simple flick of a wrist, each item can be recycled and made into brand new products. Helping our economy, our earth, and our communities. So don’t throw away our future.
To learn more about each part of the recycling process, visit ReCommunity.com/Education.