Post-Holiday Recycling!

We hope you had a wonderful holiday season! For information regarding Christmas tree recycling, how to safely recycle old Christmas lights, and wrapping paper recycling, see below!

Wrapping paper

Most gift wrap is recyclable, except plastic wraps or metallic papers. All cardboard and paperboard packaging is also recyclable. Please reuse ribbons and bows or discard in the trash.  If you do not have curbside recycling where you live, you may utilize the Town of Normal’s drop-off locations.

Christmas trees

Residents of Bloomington and Normal enrolled in those municipalities’ waste collection programs may dispose of their real (non-artificial) Christmas tree by placing it at the curb for collection on your regularly scheduled waste collection day. As these trees will be chipped into mulch, please be sure to remove all ornaments, tinsel, lights, etc. Please do not put your tree or any other waste in the street.

For residents outside of Bloomington or Normal, please check with your local municipality for tree collection options. If you do not have tree collection service at your home or in your municipality, Twin City Wood Recycling will accept your tree for chipping into mulch at their facility at 1606 W Oakland Avenue in Bloomington at a cost of $2 per tree. Call (309) 827-9663 for more information and operating hours.

Christmas lights & other e-waste

Illinois law bans most consumer electronics from landfills–they must be recycled instead. Residents can recycle strings of Christmas lights, cords, and related electronic items, regardless of condition, at one of the many locations listed below.

Did Santa bring you a new TV? Note that only two local sites now accept the older tube-style CRT TVs and monitors for recycling. See “Items Accepted” for each of the e-waste recycling collection points below.

Location: Best Buy, 2103 N Veterans Pkwy Suite 200, Bloomington, 309-663-8090
Items Accepted: Computers, computer accessories, monitors, televisions up to 32″ (flatscreens up to 60″), all types of radios, VCRs, cameras, etc. Damaged or non-working items accepted. Customers are limited to bringing in 3 units per day per household.
Items Not Accepted: appliances, microwaves, TVs that are consoles, rear-projections, or DLPs or larger than 32″, items with freon such as air conditioners, dehumidifiers, refrigerators. No business generated waste.
Hours: Monday-Saturday 10:00 am-9:00 pm, Sunday 11:00 am-8:00 pm

Location: Home Sweet Home Warehouse Operations, 1700 W Washington St., Bloomington, 309-828-1530
Items Accepted: Computers, laptops, printers, fax, scanners, copiers, peripherals, phone systems, all types of radios, VCRs,
Microwaves, toaster ovens, hair dryers, curling irons, cash registers, cameras, blenders, and other small appliances. Damaged or non-working items accepted. All types of cell phones, pagers, PDAs and their chargers, cables, and headset accessories
All of the small computer accessories such as MP3 players, iPods, digital cameras, hand- held scanners, handheld games and other connected devices. All forms of electronic media and their cases: diskettes, zip disks, CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, DVDs et al, game cartridges, DAT, DLT, and virtually all other type of computer tapes (ONLY at Mission Mart location)
Items Not Accepted: No CRT (tube-style) TVs or monitors, no VHS tapes or audio cassettes, no business-generated waste
Hours: Monday-Saturday 8:00 am-4:00 pm, 24 hour drop-off

Location: Habitat For Humanity ReStore, 1402 W Washington, Bloomington, 309-454-6047
Items Accepted: Computers, laptops, printers, fax, scanners, copiers, peripherals, phone systems, all types of radios, VCRs, Microwaves, toaster ovens, hair dryers, curling irons, cash registers, cameras, blenders, and other small appliances. Damaged or non-working items accepted. All forms of electronic media and their cases: diskettes, zip disks, CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, DVDs et al, game cartridges, DAT, DLT, and virtually all other type of computer tapes. All forms of printer cartridges including both inkjet and toner. All types of cell phones, pagers, PDAs and their chargers, cables, and headset accessories. All of the small computer accessories such as MP3 players, iPods, digital cameras, hand- held scanners, handheld games and other connected devices.
Items Not Accepted: No CRT (tube-style) TVs or monitors, no VHS tapes or audio cassettes, no business generated waste
Hours: Tuesday-Friday 10:00 am-5:00 pm and Saturday from 9:00 am-4:00 pm

Location: Normal Public Works Garage, 1301 Warriner St., Normal, 309-454-9571
Items Accepted: Computers, laptops,televisions, monitors, printers, fax, scanners, copiers, peripherals, phone systems, all types of radios, VCRs, microwaves, toaster ovens, hair dryers, curling irons, cash registers, cameras, blenders, and other small appliances. Damaged or non-working items accepted.
All forms of electronic media: diskettes, zip disks, CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, DVDs et al, game cartridges, DAT, DLT, and virtually all other type of computer tapes. All forms of printer cartridges including both inkjet and toner. All types of cell phones, pagers, PDAs and their chargers, cables, and headset accessories. All of the small computer accessories such as MP3 players, iPods, digital cameras, hand- held scanners, handheld games and other connected devices.
Items Not Accepted: No VHS tapes or audio cassettes, no business generated waste
Hours: Monday-Friday 7:00 am-2:30 pm; the first Saturday of every month 8:00 am-12:00 pm
Summer hours 6:00 am-1:30 pm (Memorial Day through Labor Day)

For more information on recycling, hazardous waste disposal, and more, you can always consult other sections of this or call us at 309-454-3169.

Home, Lawn and Garden Day

Home, Lawn and Garden Day
Turn March into magic with educational classes, inspirational speakers, and horticulture treasures from a variety of exceptional businesses and artisans at the 15th Annual Home, Lawn and Garden Day sponsored by University of Illinois Extension McLean County Master Gardeners. This event will take place from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Saturday, March 4 at Central Catholic High School, Bloomington. Pre-registration is required before February 23.
Attendees select four workshops from 39 trending horticulture topics and also attend the welcome and keynote sessions. Local Certified Floral Designers will open the morning by inspiring us all with “Floral Arrangements: So Alike yet So Different” as they use like flowers to produce unique arrangements, all while sticking to the principals of design. Keynote speaker, Chris Benda, botanist and President of the Illinois Native Plant Society, will talk on “Illinois Wildflowers in the Home Garden” and how to create a native habitat in your yard. A $50 registration fee includes workshops, vendors and exhibitors, lunch, door prizes, and silent auction. For more information and to register online, please visit go.illinois.edu/HLGD. Registration is open January 9 through February 23. For more information about the program, please contact us at University of Illinois Extension- McLean County Office at (309) 663-8306

Sugar Creek Stewards January Workday

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Come join us for our January workday along Sugar Creek! We need help improving Sugar Creek in Bloomington near Tipton Parks and in Normal, near Anderson and Fairview parks by clearing invasive plant species and managing the non-invasive plants. We’ll work the Fairview site for our January work day.

The next workday is Saturday, January 21, from 9 am to 12 pm. Volunteers must be 18 years old or older (or 14 and accompanied by a parent or guardian) and be able to hike along uneven terrain and safely use basic hand tools such as loppers and bow saws. Please wear warm weather appropriate clothing and bring your own work gloves and (reusable) bottle of water. We have scheduled work days the 3rd Saturday of the month throughout the year – invasive species never sleep, so neither can we!

 

The Sugar Creek Stewards is a Clean Water Program of the Ecology Action Center, and is supported by the City of Bloomington and the Town of Normal. For more information, contact us.

 

barry-mantis

Details on worksite and meeting location will be provided to registered volunteers prior to the workday. To become a regular EAC volunteer and be automatically contacted for future Sugar Creek Steward workdays and other volunteer opportunities, register at EAC-Volunteer.

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Town of Normal: Notice of Electric Aggregation Scam

Normal, IL – December 19, 2016 – It has come to the Town’s attention that solicitors have recently been sharing incorrect information regarding the Town of Normal Electric Aggregation program. This is a scam. Residents participating in the Town’s aggregation program should be aware that there has been no change to the current program or electric supply provider, Constellation Energy. Neither the Town of Normal nor the current provider are currently engaged in any door-to-door solicitation activity.

Solicitors operating in the Town of Normal are required to register with the Town of Normal Police Department and provide proof of permit when operating in the community. If you encounter a solicitor claiming to falsely represent the Town of Normal or the electric aggregation program, you should ask to see a valid permit, document the individual’s name, and contact the Town of Normal Police Department at (309) 888 – 5030.

As a reminder, all communication regarding the aggregation program is done through mail. If you believe you have been misled and signed up for an alternative energy supply program, please contact Ben McCready at (309) 454 – 9504 for additional assistance.

More information: https://www.normal.org/1103/Electric-Aggregation

CANCELLED: Sugar Creek Stewards Workday

scs logo

Come join us for our December workday along Sugar Creek! We need help improving Sugar Creek in Bloomington near Tipton Parks and in Normal, near Anderson, Fairview. by clearing invasive plant species and managing the non-invasive plants. We’ll work the Fairview site for our December work day.

The next workday is Saturday, December 17, from 9 am to 12 pm. Volunteers must be 18 years old or older (or 14 and accompanied by a parent or guardian) and be able to hike along uneven terrain and safely use basic hand tools such as loppers and bow saws. Please wear warm weather appropriate clothing and bring your own work gloves and (reusable) bottle of water. We have scheduled work days the 3rd Saturday of the month throughout the year – invasive species never sleep, so neither can we!

The Sugar Creek Stewards is a Clean Water Program of the Ecology Action Center, and is supported by the City of Bloomington and the Town of Normal. For more information, contact us.

 

barry-mantis

Details on worksite and meeting locations will be provided to registered volunteers prior to the workday. To become a regular EAC volunteer and be automatically contacted for future Sugar Creek Steward workdays, register at EAC-Volunteer.

 

Solar Training Academy starts January 14

Learn the Solar PV Design and Installation Process in Five Weekends

Starting January 14, the Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA) will be holding the Solar Training Academy in Normal, IL. Students learn the full solar PV design and installation process, with no previous solar experience or prerequisites required. The course runs one weekend per month, January – May 2017.

Upon academy completion, students qualify to sit for the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Associates Exam. Being a NABCEP Certified Solar Professional is the industry “gold standard” as noted by Silicon Energy employee and Academy graduate, Will Gorilla, “If I had a candidate apply for a job and they were NABCEP certified, it would completely make them stand out.”

The Solar Training Academy provides professional networking opportunities, as well as continuing education credits needed to stay current on certifications and updates needed to maintain competitive edge in the industry. MREA instructors are professionals that work in the field and are up to date on the newest techniques and technologies in the ever evolving solar industry.

Classes will be held at Heartland Community College, 1500 West Raab Road, in Normal, IL 61761. The course instructor is Alex Jarvis. Alex has been working in the renewable energy field since 2006. Alex instructs PV classes across the states and writes about renewable energy in Indiana. Alex holds a B.A. in Economics from Indiana University. He and his company design and install both grid-tied and battery-based systems, also working O&M for MW sized PV sites. Alex is a NABCEP Certified PV Installer. Alex teaches PV classes for the MREA, including PV Sales and Finance (PV 203). Alex also holds MREA Certified PV Site Assessor certificate.

Academy format follows MREA’s accredited class progression including:

  • Basic Photovoltaics
  • PV Site Assessment
  • Intermediate PV
  • PV Design Lab
  • PV Sales and Finance
  • Completed training qualifies students to sit for:
    • NABCEP PV Associate Exam (MREA’s STA has a 96% student pass rate)
    • 63 hours of classroom training needed for NABCEP
    • PV Installation and NABEP PV Technical Sales Professional
    • MREA PV Site Assessor Certificate Exam
    • MREA PV Design and Sales Certificate Exam

You can learn more and register for the Solar Training Academy at: https://www.midwestrenew.org/product/sta-il-2017/

Giving Tuesday

Tuesday, November 29, 2016 is #givingtuesday, an international day of giving.  Please consider making a donation to support the Ecology Action Center’s work to improve our local environment.  We welcome contributions towards a few different funds, depending on what priorities you choose to support.  As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, contributions are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law.  Thank you for your support!

eac_2016_vertb    hhw-logo-2016  CR_logo radon-awareness2

 

Sugar Creek Stewards Workday

scs logo

Come join us for our November workday along Sugar Creek! We have had a great group coming out throughout the summer to work on Sugar Creek in Bloomington and in Normal, near Anderson, Fairview and Tipton Parks, and have been clearing all sorts of invasive plant species and managing the good ones! In November, we’ll be back along Sugar Creek in Bloomington!

The next workday will be Saturday, November 19, from 9 am to 12 pm. Volunteers must be 18 years old or older (or 14 and accompanied by a parent or guardian) and be able to hike along uneven terrain and safely use basic hand tools such as loppers and bow saws. Please wear long pants, closed toe shoes, and bring your own work gloves and bottle of water (reusable bottle, of course). We will work on the 3rd Saturday of the month throughout the year – invasives never sleep, so neither can we!

The Sugar Creek Stewards is a Clean Water Program of the Ecology Action Center, and is supported by the City of Bloomington and the Town of Normal. For more information, contact us.

 

barry-mantis

Details on worksite and meeting location will be provided to registered volunteers prior to the workday. To become a regular EAC volunteer and be automatically contacted for future Sugar Creek Steward workdays, register at EAC-Volunteer.

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The Refuge Food Forest End of Season Work Day

Installing cages, wrapping trees, pruning, finishing the insect hotel.food-forest-in-early-morning-mist