The NRRA School Recycling Club

Northeast Resource Recovery Association

School News You Can Use – January, 2019


  • CLUB News – Member Updates & Contest; Update from Somersworth Farm to School
  • NRRA Member News & Services –  What’s Your Sign?
  • 2019 Conference News –  Speaker Deadline Extended; Online Registration Now Open; Keynote Speaker on Ocean Plastics
  • NRRA Grant News   YIMBY! Grant Focuses on Composting; Town & Gown Webinars Ready to View; Keene School District Outreach Work; Presenting School HazMat 101!
  • NRRA SWIP News – White River Alliance SWD and Rutland SWAC SWIP Work 2018-2019
  • In The News – National Battery Day Feb. 18; Ryan’s Recycling Update; Teen Starts Eco-Bank
  • Contests, Scholarships & Fundraisers –  Live Mas Scholarship; Carton 2 Garden Recycling Contest
  • Government News (NHDES & EPA & USDA) – Andover Green Schools Recognized by EPA; PEYA Apps due Feb. 1
  • Activity – Be Prepared! Milk Jug First Aid Kit

Click HERE to view PDF



CLUB Membership Update Contest

The CLUB is excited to launch our first annual CLUB Membership update in January.  Our first email blast went out on January 11! First responders will receive 10% off their School Recycling Conference registration!

It couldn’t be easier to update your school contact information now that we have our online Member Registration link.


Somersworth Farm to School Gives Thanks


By Wendy Berkeley, 12/12/18

Our good-natured custodian John, from Somersworth Middle School, taking care of compost details. (Photo Courtesy of Wendy Berkeley)


Composting at Maple Wood Elementary School and Somersworth Middle School continues to divert waste from landfills, and all students and staff there are to thank for a very successful first two years.


Our custodians are on the front lines of a more sustainable Somersworth, and we sure are fortunate for their commitment.


Visit Somersworth Farm to School on Facebook at Somersworth Farm to School, or on Instagram at Farm to Somersworth Schools, to keep up to date on events, activities, and ways to get involved.


What has your recycling club (or transfer station) been up to?

Send us your pictures and we’ll share them in our next newsletter!



NRRA Member News & Services


What’s Your Sign?








Did you know . . . that NH towns can get free recycling signage through NH the Beautiful? Towns are allotted a certain number of points each year which they can use for standard town or school signs.  Check with your local Transfer Station or contact for details on point status and eligibility.


Planning an Event for Spring? Reserve a Can Cage or Recyclemobile!

Thanks to the generous sponsorship of NRRA, NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB and Schnitzer Steel Industries, Inc., the Can Cages (2) are available for loan to member schools for FREE!

For more information CLICK HERE or contact Programs Coordinator, Gwen Erley at


Thanks to the generous sponsorship of NRRA and New Hampshire the Beautiful, Inc., our three RecycleMobiles are available for loan to NH schools, municipalities and community groups for FREE!

Please contact the NRRA by telephone at (603) 736-4401 or by e-mail at for more information and scheduling details. To reserve the RecycleMobile for your community’s event, download, complete and send in the RecycleMobile Reservation Form.




Thanks to NH the Beautiful, schools may purchase discounted recycling bins and ClearStreams.



For discounted school recycling bins, go to:


For discounted school ClearStreams™ Recyclers, go to:




We Recycled Our Theme for 2019!

Recycling STILL Rules!



Keynote Speaker on Ocean Plastics


Katherine Shayne

NRRA is pleased to announce that the Keynote Speaker for our 38th Annual Northeast Recycling Conference & Expo is Katherine Shayne.

Katherine is the Co-founder and CEO of Can I Recycle This, Inc., a company using AI to help citizens understand the end-of-life of their products through social media and technology. She received her Master’s Degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Georgia, where she also earned her B.S. in Environmental Engineering. Katherine consults as a researcher in environmental sustainability focused on material flow systems, citizen science, and marine plastic litter for the Jambeck Research Group and UGA New Materials Institute.

NRRA School Recycling CLUB is pleased to announce that Kat Shayne will have  a special presentation just for Schools regarding progress of cleaning up plastic in the ocean.


Call for Speakers!

For Speaker Abstract Instructions, CLICK HERE!


Proposal deadline extended to Friday, January 25!



Mark Your Calendar!


Our 10th Annual School Recycling Conference & Expo is set for May 21, 2019 – the second day of our 2-day NRRA Conference & Expo!




Don’t Forget Your NHtB School Grant!


Thanks to NH the Beautiful, NH Schools will again receive 1/2 off their registrations in 2019, defraying the cost so that more students and teachers can attend.  Add that to your early registration for a terrific discount! For the NH the Beautiful Grant Application, CLICK HERE!



Sharpen Your Pencils!

NH Schools – Put on your thinking caps! NH the Beautiful also added a new

$500 School Recycling Innovation Grant in 2018. Start planning your essays now and maybe your school will receive a check at the next Conference!



Online Registration Now Open!

To register now, go to:


Please Note: For groups with both Teachers and Students,  you must complete at least TWO separate forms – one for all of the teachers, one to include all of the students.



YIMBY! – Yes In My Backyard!

NRRA is proud to announce that we have received a new grant from USDA!

YIMBY! – Yes In My Backyard! – will focus on composting and batteries.




For all the details, see our Press Release!



Town & Gown Webinar Links Now Available!


Outreach training in NH and VT has been completed and we are pleased to present the  completed webinars for professional development credit to Operators and Teachers where applicable.

(Please note that you must register and complete each webinar evaluation to receive credit.  All webinars are proprietary and cannot be duplicated or disseminated without express written permission from NRRA.)

To access our webinars, go to our RESOURCES Page!


Presenting … School HazMat 101!

Are you concerned about your school’s health and safety? NRRA’s School HazMat 101: A Blueprint for Hazardous Materials Management in Schools was written specifically to help the entire school community benefit from addressing hazardous materials use. Funded by the USDA Rural Utilities Program, this manual provides information that improves the school’s ability to employ safe management practices.

Many people are accustomed to using hazardous materials in their everyday lives and have become desensitized to the potential health and environmental risks. They also may not fully understand the short­ and long-term health and environmental consequences. NRRA’s School HazMat 101: A Blueprint for Hazardous Materials Management in Schools reveals how hazardous materials can be used safely by raising awareness of the role hazardous materials play in their lives and the associated risks. This manual informs school personnel how to be pro-active in protecting themselves, the students, the environment, and by taking a leadership role in their community.

For grant reporting purposes, we are asking that schools contact NRRA individually and sign a Terms of Use stating they will not share their password. We want to track interest areas and demographics. Once we receive your signed Terms of Use, we will send you the password and link for School HazMat 101. Please send your signed Terms of Use to


Concerned about your school’s air quality? If you would like to have an assessment done at your school, you may order our Technical Assistance Training – Green Cleaning & Indoor Air Quality Assessment. For details, check out our MENU or contact Gwen Erley at


Keene School District Recycling Program

The Keene School District has contracted NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB to provide analysis, programming and equipment to facilitate effective and cost-saving recycling throughout the District.

Phase One was completed in 2017 with Star Assessments being done at each school.  Surveys were sent to staff at all seven schools to gauge their current recycling efforts.  Programming and recycling equipment will be provided this coming school year.

In preparation for this programming, a Star Assessment Training was held on Sept. 14 for representatives from each of the Keene schools. (See Press Release.) Each representative (along with several Girl Scouts) learned how to collect the field data needed to provide a comprehensive evaluation of their school’s current recycling program. The representatives will collect their data in October and send it to NRRA for analysis and a final report.

For more information, please contact Gwen Erley, Programs Coordinator at


Teacher Resources Available for Purchase!

Classic K-12 Recycling Activities with

21st Century Standards


Thanks to grant funding through USDA-Rural Development, NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB is proud to offer the newest editions of their school curricula 3R’s of the Common Core: A Teacher’s Resource Guide to Solid Waste and Recycling and Teaching Toxics: Creating Solutions to Household Pollution.  These references are divided into age appropriate lessons for K-3, 4-6, 7-8 and 9-12. Schools may select from hard copy or PDF versions.

In addition, four classroom workshop modules have been updated and are available in PDF versions only.  They are:

  1. Garbage Guerrillas
  2. Back to the Earth
  3. Healthy Home/Clean Waters
  4. Waste = Global Climate Change

Anyone else interested in purchasing these resources should contact NRRA Programs Coordinator, Gwen Erley, at

  • For the Pricing Guide, click HERE.
  • For the Terms of Use, click HERE.
  • For the Curricula Descriptions, click HERE.





White River Alliance Solid Waste District School Outreach Continues for 2018-19 School Year

Workshops and Technical Assistance Available

Vermont – We have completed our first and started our second round of outreach to schools in the White River Alliance Solid Waste District in Eastern/Central, VT. We will be working with two schools in the 2018-2019 school year.

School outreach consists of four workshops and two technical assistance trainings. These are being paid for by the Alliance so there is no cost to the schools.

Alliance communities include:  Barnard, Bethel, Granville, Hancock, Pittsfield, Rochester, Royalton and Stockbridge.

For more information, please contact The CLUB at


Rutland County SWAC SWIP Outreach

Ramping Up for 2019

Vermont – NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB has completed our school outreach efforts for the 2017-2018 School year on behalf of the Rutland County Solid Waste Alliance Communities (RCSWAC). We met with two more Rutland County schools in April. Our goal is to assist with Act 148, Universal Recycling compliance.

Fair Haven enjoyed a presentation on Healthy Home/Clean Waters through our USDA Town & Gown Grant.  See the PRESS RELEASE for details.

Outreach will resume next spring for the 2018-2019 school year.  School outreach consists of an NRRA Star Assessment and ANR School Recycling Scorecard.  There is no cost to the schools thanks to RCSWAC grant funding.

RCSWAC Member towns include:  Benson, Chittenden, Fair Haven, Middletown Springs, Pawlet, Rutland Town, Shrewsbury, Sudbury, Tinmouth and West Haven.

For more information, please contact The CLUB at





From our Friends at Call2Recycle

Go Green This Holiday Season

Turn the holiday shopping season green by recycling your old batteries! The best way to check ‘help the planet’ off your holiday list: make sure your Call2Recycle boxes are full when you ship them back.


Looking for more materials or to access battery safety information? Visit our refreshed homepage for all your battery needs. Wishing you a green and joyful holiday season!


Get Charged Up for National Battery Day 2019!


Batteries power our world and provide many everyday conveniences. As responsible consumers, it’s important to properly manage household batteries once they no longer power devices by recycling them. We’re partnering with Call2Recycle on National Battery Day February 18th to showcase how easy it is to go green with battery recycling year-round! Get started by visiting the Call2Recycle locator ( to find a drop-off location near you and be sure to check Call2Recycle’s homepage ( for more information, including National Battery Day 2019 resources coming soon!



From our Friends at


5 Feel-Good Stories

By Meredith Nardino, Writing Intern

  1. Millie Bobby Brown Was Named the Youngest UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador
  2. Jaden Smith Is Here to Make Environmental Activism Fashionable
  3. Parkland Students Received International Children’s Peace Prize for Gun Violence Prevention Efforts
  4. Dr. Christine Blasey Ford Stood Up for Sexual Assault Survivors (Again)
  5. Gen Z Was Named the Most Diverse and Best Educated Generation Yet

For the entire article, go to:


From our Friends at


In the Spotlight: Ryan’s Recycling:

The Future of the Waste and Recycling Industry


Recycling nearly half a million can and bottles since he started the business, nine-year old entrepreneur Ryan Hickman is committed to educating people on how to recycle correctly and keeping cans and bottles from harming the environment.

For the whole article, go to:




From our Friends at

Teenager’s ‘Eco-bank’ Turns Waste into Money

José Adolfo, a 13-year-old from Peru, has developed an “eco-bank” that allows children and young adults to deposit solid waste and withdraw money.

Bank members must bring in at least 11 pounds of solid waste—paper or plastic—and establish a savings goal to open an account, Recycling Today reports. Once accepted, bank partners are required to deposit at least 2.2 pounds of recyclables per month.

According to the report, the waste is then sold to recycling companies and money is deposited into the individual’s account. The teenager set out on this venture to fight poverty and climate change.

Recycling Today has more details:

From our Friends at


Tips for Holiday Recycling


Recycling Tips to Make the Holidays More Environmentally Friendly

According to the EPA, 80 percent of what is thrown away during the holidays can be recycled or repurposed.

Waste360 Staff | Dec 10, 2018

With parties, decorations, gift giving and travel, Americans generate 25 percent more waste than average between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day—equating to almost 1,000 pounds of trash per household. However, roughly 80 percent of what is thrown away during the holidays can be recycled or repurposed, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

This holiday season, Republic Services encourages consumers to incorporate simple, environmentally responsible practices into celebrations and family gatherings to minimize waste.

For the whole article and a fun video, CLICK HERE!

From our Friends at


Recycling Mystery: Children’s Toys


Brian Brassaw January 2, 2019

Trying to figure out what to do with toys your child has outgrown? Check out our guide for reuse and responsible disposal.

For all the tips, CLICK HERE! 



Recycling & Environmental Game Links

In our internet travels, we have found several links to recycling and environmental games and activities that students might enjoy:


As the weather forces us indoors, are you concerned about your school’s indoor air quality?

For technical assistance, please consider The CLUB’s Indoor Air Quality & Green Cleaning training. For an overview, you can view our recorded webinar located on our Resources page. Just scroll down to Webinar 13.

For more information about scheduling an evaluation for your school, please contact


Contests, Scholarships & Fundraisers


From our Friends at


NWF Photo Contest Starts Jan 16

The National Wildlife® Photo Contest, which began more than four decades ago, celebrates the power of photography to advance conservation and connect both photographers and viewers with wildlife and the outdoors. The most compelling nature images can help protect wildlife in profound ways.

Our 48th annual photo contest begins January 16. Every person who enters not only honors their own work, but also helps support the conservation mission of the National Wildlife Federation, which is dedicated to saving wildlife species and their habitats. Photographers retain rights to their work. Those who choose to donate some of their images share joint ownership with NWF, and further help us advance our conservation mission.

We are excited to announce the following eight categories for entry in our 2019 contest: Birds, Mammals, Reptiles & Amphibians, Insects & Other Invertebrates, Underwater Wonders, Landscapes & Plants, People in Nature, and a new Youth category for nature photographers age 13-17.

For details, go to:|MTOther

To view the 2018 winners, go to:


From our Friends at NOAA

Funding Opportunity:  Hefty® EnergyBag®

The Hefty® EnergyBag® program allows hard-to-recycle plastics to be collected curbside and converted into new resources.

The funding opportunity is open to communities, municipalities, local materials recovery facilities, nonprofits, non-governmental organizations, and brand owners to expand the initiative on a national level. Download the application here.

Closing date: 1/31/19



From our Friends at DoSomething


DoSomething/Taco Bell Foundation Live Mas Scholarship


That’s right! The Live Más Scholarship isn’t based on your grades or how well you play sports. No essays, no test scores, no right or wrong answers.

Are you between the ages of 16-24? Do you have a unique passion and want to make a difference in the world? Then apply to win a Live Más Scholarship for up to $25,000!

All you have to do is explain your life’s passion and how the Live Más Scholarship will help you reach your dreams through a simple 2-minute video. Learn how to apply before the February 21 deadline!

It’s Not Too Early to Think Spring!


From our Friends at


Carton 2 Garden

Open to public and private schools, Carton 2 Garden will award fifteen innovative garden creations featuring creative and sustainable uses for repurposed milk and juice cartons – including a $5,000 grand prize! Register today and get exclusive lesson plans to integrate your project with your classroom.

Entries are due by Monday, March 25, 2019 by Midnight PST.

You can access the online entry form at:


From our Friends at Waste360 Daily Wire

Schools Nationwide Participate in PepsiCo’s Recycle Rally Program

September 4 to April 26

By Cristina Commendatore

As the 2018-19 school year kicks off for students and teachers across the country, every school that participates in PepsiCo’s Recycle Rally program has different goals when it comes to recycling. Some schools are focused on making Recycle Rally an educational and developmental experience for the students. Others integrate the program into a broader environmental sustainability program at the school. And many schools just want to increase recycling because they are disappointed every time they see recyclables being unnecessarily added to landfills.


Here is the link to all the rules from our friends at PepsiCo Recycling Support:


From our Friends at National Wildlife Federation

Young Reporters for the Environment

NWF is looking for candidates for their 2018-2019 Young Reporters for the Environment Competition. Keep the following dates in mind:

  • February 22, 2019 – Entries due
  • April 10, 2019 – National winners announced. 1st place winners progress to international level.
  • June 5, 2019 International winners announced (World Environment Day)

For more information on this competition, CLICK HERE!


Other School Grant Opportunities



Green Schools Andover, MA Recognized by EPA

EPA Recognizes the 2018 Food Recovery Challenge Winners 

Today, EPA announced the 2018 winners of the Food Recovery Challenge — businesses and organizations being recognized for their outstanding efforts and leadership to prevent and divert food waste and promote the sustainable management of food. This year’s awardees utilized various approaches to reduce food waste, such as purchasing only what they need, menu forecasting and creatively preparing meals.

Over 1,000 entities, including grocers, restaurants and educational institutions, participate in EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge. Participants pledge to improve their food management practices and report their results. Sustainable management of food is a systematic approach that seeks to reduce wasted food and its associated negative impacts over the entire life cycle, from natural resources, manufacturing, sales and consumption and ending with decisions about final disposal.

In 2017, participants prevented or diverted almost 648,000 tons of food from entering landfills or incinerators. These efforts saved participants up to $31.2 million in avoided landfill fees, benefitted communities with donations of 214,000 tons of food and helped the environment by decreasing carbon emissions equivalent to taking more than 96,000 cars off the road for a year.

Find out who our 2018 winners are here:

Congratulations to Andover Green Schools, MA for their award in the Narrative Category!

Applications Now Accepted for the President’s Environmental Youth Award


The application period is now open for the 2018 President’s Environmental Youth Award (PEYA) program. The PEYA program recognizes outstanding environmental stewardship projects by K-12 youth, promoting awareness of our nation’s natural resources and encouraging positive community involvement. Winners of this year’s awards will be invited to a ceremony in Washington, D.C. in mid-2019, and have their project mentioned on EPA’s website.

EPA will select up to two winners in each of EPA’s 10 Regions – one regional winner for Grades K-5 and one regional winner for Grades 6-12. All student projects must be sponsored by at least one adult over the age of 21.


The application and eligibility information are available at:

Applications are due February 1, 2019

For questions, please contact



EPA’s WasteWise encourages organizations and businesses to achieve sustainability in their practices and reduce select industrial wastes.

WasteWise is part of EPA’s sustainable materials management efforts, which promote the use and reuse of materials more productively over their entire lifecycles.

To learn more, go to WasteWise Fact Sheet.


As part of EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge, organizations pledge to improve their sustainable food management practices and report their results. The FRC is part of EPA’s Sustainable Materials Management Program (SMM). SMM seeks to reduce the environmental impact of materials through their entire life cycle. This includes how they are extracted, manufactured, distributed, used, reused, recycled, and disposed.

To learn more, go to:  EPA FRC




Be Prepared!


From our Friends at


Milk Jug First Aid Kit

By: A Spoonful of Sugar

Updated November 13, 2018

Do you have an old milk jug taking up room in your recycling bin? Turn it into a handy first aid kit with this Milk Jug First Aid Kit tutorial. Great for college kids and traveling, this kit can hold everything you need so you’re always prepared. And it’s environmentally friendly, so it’s nice to Mother Earth, as well. Create a couple of these first aid kits and keep one in the car and one in your suitcase so you’re always prepared no matter what happens. This kit also makes a great gift for someone living on their own for the first time.


  • Plastic milk jug/juice container
  • 1 snap closure and a snap setting tool
  • Small scrap of colored vinyl or contact paper

For all the details, CLICK HERE!



02/18/19 – National Battery Day – For further information to:

03/18/19 – Global Recycling Day – The second annual celebration from the Bureau of International Recycling!  For more information, visit:

03/22/19 – World Water Day – To plan your event, visit

04/22/19 – Earth Day – To plan your event, see future newsletters and visit

04/26/19 – Arbor Day – To plan your event, visit

05/08/19 – Bike to School Day – To register your school event:

05/20-21/19 – NRRA’s 38th Annual Recycling Conference & Expo

05/21/19 – School Recycling CLUB’s 10th Annual School Recycling Conference (the Conference within the Conference); Registration assistance available for NH schools through NH the Beautiful.

06/05/19 – World Environment Day – To plan your event, visit

06/08/19 – World Oceans Day – To plan your event, visit


Rhonda and her recycling robo-octopus.




mailboxWHAT IS YOUR SCHOOL CLUB UP TO? The NRRA School Recycling CLUB always loves to hear what its members and other schools are doing to recycle and help the environment so we can share it through our newsletter. There are so many different things being done, and you are our best source of information about what is working in your school. It can be a new program, a long-term project that’s been proven over time, a field trip, etc. Always feel free to contact me or submit something and you may see it in the next School News You Can Use! – Gwen Erley, 1-603-736-4401, Ext. 19