With about 1.2 million residents and thousands of daily visitors, Fairfax County has a significant impact on the environment. I will do everything in my power to ensure that our County leads the race against trash to offer our future generations clean air, soil, and water.
Many of the cheap materials we use today like gasoline, plastic, Styrofoam and even sand to prepare concrete come at an extremely high price in the future in terms of public health, water supply, climate, and landscape.
I toured recently a facility that sorts recyclable waste from Fairfax County and learned a few things. One, is that we are very good at producing trash. This facility sorts about 30 tons of single stream recyclables every hour. They are not turned into new products there. Instead, they are bundled in bales, classified by material (cardboard, paper, hard plastic, aluminum, etc.) and shipped out to places that can transform them into new goods to sell.
For decades and until this year one of those places was China. The 6th largest export from the U.S. to China was recyclables for production of new goods. Since January 2018, China considerably decreased the imports of recyclable waste and now we need to find ways to manage that change. I learned that we can recycle more and better; many of our large facilities don’t follow proper procedures to recycle. Tons of non-biodegradable waste goes to our landfills after only one use.
I will work closely with the community, with businesses and with residents to find better ways to make the best out of our waste, including training for individuals and cleaning services and support of entrepreneurship to turn this issue into new opportunities for job creation and efficient use of resources.
Do you share this vision? Join me in support of this cause to reach as many people as possible! Click here to contribute $5, $10 or $15 towards this campaign to strengthen environmental stewardship in Fairfax County!