A Cause for the Cap Collection

8 12 2011

My #intcom class has a deep place in their hearts for breast cancer.  We all own pink pens thanks to our professor (@coryOConnor) who practically bought out the pink breast cancer center of Staples, and we all did our best to tweet #projectpink whenever we could, donating money towards breast cancer, sponsored by Puma.  That being said, I would love to donate these bottle caps to an organization sponsoring breast cancer, or turn them in somewhere for money so I can donate on behalf of the Chapman students!

Unfortunately, I am not having much luck.  Malia Walker, the woman I interviewed from the Waste Management of Orange County also told me there is no place she knows of where I can turn the caps in for money.  I found a few websites online about donating the caps to provide a session of chemotherapy for a patient, but looking at snopes.com (a site uncovering rumors), it is apparently not true.  As I began to think my goal was impossible, I walked into a meeting on campus and a girl was carrying a handful of plastic bottle caps, ready to bring into her work where they were donating them to provide a friend with chemotherapy.  I told her about my blog and findings but she told me that she knows it provided the patient chemotherapy because they have provided enough caps to already give him a session.  She is checking with her work today about the contact information and exact details, so I am very excited to hear back about that!

Another option for those of you who may want to donate these caps rather than just throw them in the recycle bin (unscrewed of course), is to donate them to Aveda.  Find the closest Aveda Experience Center on the Internet (Earth911.com) and take your bottle caps in. They will recycle them, turning the caps into new packaging for the Aveda hair products.





Plethora of Plastics

7 12 2011

Each type of plastic is marked with a number inside of a triangular shape made of arrows.  This number is the resin identification code (RIC).  These numbers range from 1-7 and all represent different types of plastics, with different melting points.

Bottle caps generally have an RIC of 5.  Not every recycling center has the capabilities to recycle this type of plastic, but the centers that do take ths plastic are growing in numbers. This plastic is called Polypropylene and is also used to make things like yogurt containers, syrup bottles, catsup bottles, some straws, and prescription medicine bottles as shown in the picture below.

Not only can the mixture of bottle caps and their bottles be a danger to the workers and the machines, but also, a very small amount of the wrong plastic can contaminate an entire batch of plastic being recycled. To find out which recycling centers nearby take the types of plastics you are in need of recycling, check earth911.com.  Here you can type in the area in which you live, as well as the types of things you are looking to recycle.  It brings up a list of the locations, with links to each center.

For those of you living in and around Orange County, CA, the closest places to bring plastic bottle caps would be the Aveda Experience Centers in Costa Mesa, Brea and Mission Viejo, Domestic Metals and Plastics in Long Beach, and Cactus Recycling Inc. in Paramount, CA.