By April Reynolds
The Oklahoma Production Center has been up and running for about a year now and would like to see an increase in the number of people it serves said project manager Daniel Perry.
Perry said the business located at 105 NW Railroad St. is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and they make recycling easy.
“All they have to do is pull in and we will unload them and sort the recyclable items for them,” Perry said.
If you are not able to catch them during their hours of operation, they have a convenient drop off service as well, with labeled trash bins, he said.
“Last year we served roughly 4,000 residents,” Perry said, “Now we are seeing anywhere from 15 to 20 people a day.”
Fort Gibson Mayor Brad Clinkenbeard said he hopes more residents will get on board and take their recycling to OPC.
“We have noticed our landfill costs going down a little,” Clinkenbeard said. “And we attribute that to OPC’s efforts. But we need more people to participate and think “green” for the future of our planet.”
OPC takes cardboard, paper products such as magazines and newspapers, plastic 1s and 2s such as pop bottles and cleaning containers, aluminum and tin.
Most plastic bottles will have a 1 or 2 on the bottom to help identify if they can be recycled, he said.
They can even help dispose of shredded paper, as long as it is brought to them in clear plastic bags.
Once they collect enough recyclables, they place them in a baler and send them on to different companies such as The Yaffe Company in Muskogee and National Waste Recycling out of Tulsa, to be made into new goods.
“Since it started it has increased quite a bit,” Perry said. “But it is our goal to one day offer curbside recycling and take on more products.”
Perry said they just purchased the old lumber yard next door for expanding and will be opening another resale clothing boutique Sept. 1.
“I'd like to see more people recycling,” Perry said, “not only does it save the environment but it reduces the amount of trash being picked up by the city and the amount of trash in the landfills, which in turn makes taxes go down.”
Perry has OPC for plastics and paper, but they also own the “Old Depot” Store next to the recycling center — which is a form of recycling itself.
Articles that may just end up thrown out in a landfill now have the chance to be bought at a discounted price.
They have a variety of items from clothing to kids toys.
OPC is a non-profit company that is governed by a board of directors.
It also has an office in Tahlequah which has been operating for 32 years.
If you would like to start recycling but don't know where to start you can begin by focusing on a few materials, use a plastic bin, poly kart, or even a cardboard box and start collecting only paper products or aluminum, Perry said.
Once a routine is established recycling takes no time at all and has a lot of benefits for the community and environment, he said.