The objective of this waste audit was to determine the nature and volume of materials currently going into the landfill that could be recycled using existing or new collection systems at Garner State Park. This project also recorded attitudes, behaviors and beliefs about recycling held by park visitors, staff, and hosts. Each of these groups plays an important role in the success of current or future recycling programs. This report will be used to share information and to make recommendations for optimizing recycling systems at GSP and may be used as a model for future waste audits and recycling program development at other TPWD State Parks, Natural Areas and Historic Sites.
KUB helps with recycling at GSP and was asked by FOG to process aluminum for sale as their can- crusher had failed. Subsequently, KUB assisted FOG with submission of a solid waste grant request for a new can-crusher that was not funded. Discussions continued between KUB and FOG to explore best practices for recycling in other state parks. TPWD reported that there is a minimal amount of recycling in other parks. Two state parks making an effort to recycle are in the area served by Utopia Recycles, a drop-off collection center operated by KUB. In the summer of 2013, KUB approached Rick Meyers, Superintendent of GSP and FOG about conducting a waste audit to document the need for recycling at Garner in order to promote recycling efforts and reduce waste hauling as well as to create more sustainable waste management practices and plans for state parks. At the same time, KUB asked CTRA to identify other rural recycling centers near TPWD Parks, Natural Areas and Historic Sites. By linking recycling centers with TPWD sites, recycling could help to support the sustainability goals of TPWD and increase the volumes of recyclables processed by the recycling centers. There is a long way to go to make recycling in rural Texas parks a reality but the model created by KUB, GSP, and FOG could be used to bring more TPWD sites on board with local recycling efforts.