GOING GREEN MAKES CENTS
Not only does going green make cents, but it's healthy for the environment. As the Bexar County Tax Assessor-Collector, I am strongly committed to our community and to preserving our environment. At the same time that we are helping to protect our environment, we can also put a little extra cash into our pockets.
Through an agreement with Bexar County and VIA Metropolitan Transit, county employees are permitted (at no cost) to ride any bus or trolley to and from work. In addition to saving on fuel, parking, and the wear and tear of your vehicle, it also reduces the amount of pollution and greenhouse gas emissions that is generated each day. According to Treehugger.com:
- If just one in 10 Americans use public transportation daily, our dependence on foreign oil would decrease by about 40 percent.
- Riding a bus instead of driving yourself to work is 79 times safer.
- Studies have shown that people who regularly use public transportation tend to be healthier than people who don't; this is partly due to the exercise they get from walking to and from their bus stops.
According to a recent study by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), families that use public transportation can reduce their household expenses by $6,200 annually; this exceeds the amount an average U.S. household spends on food each year.
Most people think of recycling as a way of reducing the amount of trash that goes into our landfill. While this true, it is also a way to make some extra money. Popular recycling items are ink cartridges. Consider these facts:
- It takes 2.5 ounces of oil to make a new inkjet cartridge
- It takes 112 ounces of oil to make a new laser cartridge
- In North America alone, over 350 million cartridges are discarded in our landfills each year
- Cartridges make up over 1.9 billion pounds of solid waste in America landfills; this is equivalent to 40,000 elephants and four million refrigerators
Recycling ink and toner cartridges is not only great for the environment, but it offers an opportunity to earn some quick cash. For example, Staples offers a $3 in-store coupon for each cartridge you bring into their store. As for my office, I have already implemented a program to recycle all of our toner cartridges. Our used toner cartridges are being shipped to the manufacturer for recycling with a prepaid label. Subsequently, we are paid within 30 days after the manufacture receives the toner cartridges. Furthermore, the toner recycling payments are being deposited back into the Bexar County General Fund.
I am proposing a countywide recycling program that would encourage the remanufacturing of all ink and toner cartridges. For additional information regarding our recycling program, please contact my Supervisor of Support Services, Manuel Diaz, at (210) 335-6547.