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Around the Town: March 18, 2011

Boat Shrink Wrap Recycling Program

After a cold and snowy winter, we are all looking forward to warmer, sunnier days. With the arrival of spring just around the corner, boating season is fast approaching, and removing the shrink wrap that protects vessels from ice, water and debris is part of a springtime ritual for many boat owners. As the time for boat launching approaches, Hempstead Town is pleased to remind boaters of our boat shrink wrap recycling program.

While shrink wrap serves a vital role during boat storage periods, the non-biodegradable plastic covering can clog landfills and find its way into local waterways when it’s discarded in the spring. The Town of Hempstead’s shrink wrap recycling program is making it easier for boaters to protect the planet and enjoy boating at the same time.

Marinas and private boat owners can bring their shrink wrap down to the town’s sanitation facility located at 1600 Merrick Road in Merrick, Monday through Friday, between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. In addition, residential boat owners may drop off shrink wrap on Saturdays and Sundays, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. This service is free of charge. Shrink wrap deposited for recycling must be free of lumber, rope, nails and garbage.

The average boat can use up to 14 pounds of shrink wrap. With almost 15,000 boaters calling Hempstead Town home, several tons of shrink wrap are begging for new life with the aid of recycling. Shrink wrap can be recycled into plastic lumber, plastic bags, lawn edging, banners, guardrail blocks and more.

This shrink wrap program complements the town’s other environmentally friendly recycling efforts, such as e-cycling and school-based recycling program.

I wish to thank SPLASH, a group dedicated to keeping waterways clean, and its President Rob Weltner, for bringing the shrink wrap recycling proposal to the town last year. I also wish to acknowledge Christopher Squeri, executive director of the Long Island Marine Trades Association, for his help in promoting this valuable program with local marinas and the general boating public. Together our township and SPLASH are helping to keep our planet healthier for future generations.

I encourage all boaters who use shrink wrap to take advantage of this recycling initiative.