Recycling Advocates E-Newsletter

August 2019 | |

Engaging people in creating a sustainable future through local efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle.


BYOC Campaign Update
Save the Date - Annual Meeting 9/25
Administrative Changes at RA
Do Just One Thing 
West Coast Contamination Initiative 
Funny People Get BYOC
Donate to RA via Your Bottle Drop Account

BYOC Campaign Update
By Brion Hurley

New developments from our BYOC partner Nossa Familia!

For well over a year, Nossa Familia Coffee has been supporting Recycling Advocates campaign 'Bring Your Own Cup.' We are proud of their participation and commitment to reduce solid waste in the Metro region and, as a business, to reduce the expense of managing single-use cups.  Along with their already popular 25-cent discount allowed for anyone who brings their own cup for a coffee drink, the company is now charging 25 cents on every single-use cup drink that is purchased.  The company says their new pricing approach is rooted in behavioral economics and they’ve done extensive research to justify it. While the 25 cent tax on single-use cups could be perceived as a business risk with the possibility of alienating customers, the company has only seen favorable results and no push back.

Please read on for a complete statement from Nossa Familia Coffee here and please continue to support their business at these locations in PDX:

  • Central Eastside 3rd and Clay
  • Pearl District NW 13th and Lovejoy
  • Seven Corners SE Division and Ladd St.

In other news, Nossa Familia was recently highlighted on OPB's Think Out Loud.   Listen to Nossa Familia marketing and sustainability director Karen Lickteig on the reasoning behind the 25 cent charge on to-go cups and how customers have responded to it:

If you know some coffee shops that could use some of our campaign materials (window clings, stickers, bookmarks, or tips to encourage their customers), have them contact me at
We're always happy to hear from you if you have feedback, or if you'd like to get involved with RA, or if you know of a coffee shop we should connect with. Contact us at or 503-777-0909.
Save the Date!
Please mark your calendars and join Recycling Advocates at our Annual Meeting 

Tuesday, September 24
6:30 - 8:30pm

The exact location is still being nailed down - but we plan to host a meeting with several dynamic speakers, similar to last year's annual meeting, which, for those who attended will recall, was a lot of fun and very informative!  Refreshments will be served!  Brion Hurley, RA board president, will give an update on our Bring Your Own Cup campaign as well as seek input from attendees on new directions and the future of RA.  We hope to see you there!

Administrative Changes At Recycling Advocates

You may have noticed that you have not received a newsletter from RA for some months! Our apologies for not keeping up! The RA Board has made a change in the day-to-day management of our Community Resource administrator.  First of all, RA would like to say "Thank You and Best Wishes!" to the amazing Adrienne Welsh who has stepped down from this position after serving as our Community Resource Manager since 2014.  Many of you know Adrienne for her awesome coordination of our annual meetings, representing RA at important community events, as a major voice behind our newsletters, donor and fundraising outreach, and so much, much more. Thank you for your service and dedication, Adrienne. You will be missed but at the same time, we wish you all the best in your new endeavors!

With that, a former board member, Denise Slattery, has stepped in to fill the position. Denise has been an RA board member and affiliated with the organization for more than three years.  To reach Denise on any issue related to RA, simply reach out at or leave a message at 503-777-0909.

Do Just One Thing:
By Denise Slattery,  RA Resource Manager 

Make Every Thread Count!

There’s a lot of information circulating about the impact of single-use plastics on our environment and it’s about time! Thankfully, many people in our region are getting wise to how to bring less plastic into their households and how to use less single-use containers when out and about.  (Keep it up and BYOC!) However, less information is circulating regarding the rise of textile waste and how this impacts our local and global environments.

Oregon DEQ has launched a new waste prevention campaign called “Make Every Thread Count” designed to help educate Oregonians about textile waste and how to help keep your clothing working better, and longer, for you.  I recently learned about this campaign during a Master Recycler event/workshop in Clackamas County.  

Some alarming facts from the DEQ website:

  • Consumers are buying more clothes and wearing them less. The average consumer now buys 60 percent more clothing items a year and keeps them for about half as long as 15 years ago.  
  • Clothing producers are increasing production to meet this demand. Worldwide, clothing production doubled between 2000 and 2014. By 2014, the number of garments exceeded 100 billion.
  • Many of those garments are low quality and don’t last as long as they used to. In fact, the life of consumer products, like clothing, shortened by 50 percent from 1992 to 2002.  This means that many of those items end up in landfills. Americans throw away over 32 billion pounds of textiles a year!
  • Making clothing uses resources: It can take 1,500 gallons of water to manufacture just one T-shirt and a pair of jeans. That’s how much water you will drink in 13 years.
  • Extending clothing life by just three months can reduce carbon, water and waste footprints by up to 10 percent.

Here are a few ways you can reduce textile waste in your own household and keep the clothing you own lasting longer.  These practices are especially important for younger people to learn - so the adopted behaviors will last a lifetime!  

Clean correctly: Follow washing instructions to keep the clothing you have in the best shape.

Fix-It: Mend what you have and if you can’t do it yourself, check out the many Repair Cafes  held around Portland.  Or take clothing to a local dry cleaner where, in most cases, mending can be had at a reasonable cost.

Use the machine dryer sparingly:  Use a line or laundry hanger to air dry clothing. Drying clothing in a machine dryer really wears out the wear of garments!  

Buy ReUsed:  There are so many quality outlets for buying reused clothing in our region, it’s hard to rationalize spending good money on new garments when you can shop for gently used.  And who doesn't love a bargain!

West Coast Contamination Initiative Receives $1 Million Donation From The Recycling Partnership 

The Recycling Partnership recently announced the launch of a West Coast Contamination Initiative with a $1 million donation.  Contamination costs the U.S. recycling system more than $300 million every year and is especially costly to communities along the West Coast. To tackle this crucial challenge, The Recycling Partnership with support from Amazon, Keurig Dr Pepper (KDP) and other funding partners, is launching the West Coast Contamination Initiative (WCCI).  WCCI’s goal is to increase the quality of recyclables collected at the curb in communities up and down the West Coast, which will help drive the circular economy, create a healthier environment and build stronger communities. To do this, the Partnership will work together with state and municipal leadership to develop tactics, best practices, and tools available to communities from San Diego to Salem to Seattle, to recycle more and recycle better. Contamination happens when non-recyclable items are mixed in with recyclables or when recyclable items aren’t kept loose in the bin. 
Recycling Advocates endorses this initiative!  WCCI is one of several planned anti-contamination projects from The Recycling Partnership that will take place across the country.

“California, Oregon, and Washington have been hit hard by the current recycling market conditions,” says Keefe Harrison, CEO, The Recycling Partnership. “For the past five years, we have been developing, testing and refining best practices and tools to help states like Massachusetts and cities like Chicago and Atlanta, not just weather, but rise above challenges in the recycling marketplace. Thanks to support from Amazon, Keurig Dr Pepper and other funding partners we are now going to invest $1 million to help the West Coast build a more sustainable recycling system that drives the circular economy.”

Read more about this important program here 

Even Funny People Get BYOC
by Denise Slattery

Each week, either my husband or I end up bringing home a copy of Street Roots which we have come to appreciate for its pretty good reporting on local issues and for its contribution to raising awareness of the problem of homelessness in our region.

A couple of months ago the paper featured a conversation with one of our favorite comedians, Maria Bamford, who recently performed in Portland. By now you may be asking, "what does this have to do with Recycling Advocates?”

Well, stay with me!

The final question in her interview with Grass Roots staff writer Ann-Derrick Gaillot grabbed me.

Gaillot: Has your understanding of your platform as a public figure changed over the years, or has it always felt natural to ask questions about the industry?

Bamford: ....You can just get overwhelmed. And I already think I have. Like some people with mental Illness, I already have that sort of responsibility God complex thing of, “It’s me. It’s my fault. I need to change things.” You can only do so much. “Why don't you start with bringing your own coffee cup everywhere, Maria? Why don’t you do that? That’s it. Can you do that? Cause when you can do that, then let’s move on to something else. But stop tweeting about it. Bring your own coffee cup. That’s it.”

Wow. Maria packed a lot in there! What stands out for me is the idea that doing one thing, one simple behavioral change that is positive for our environment, can cascade onto the next. It’s really a very positive outlook. Do this one thing and see what’s next. Thanks, Maria, for supporting BYOC in your own special way!

Use Your Bottle Drop Account to Donate to Recycling Advocates 

Recycling Advocates is one of the dozens of non-profits and charities that you can allocate your Bottle Drop funds towards.  You can do this by simply logging into your account and clicking the Give tab.  We also have BLUE bags pre-tagged with the Recycling Advocates account number if you are planning a collection or drive.  Please contact Denise at info@recyclingadvocates to obtain those.  We appreciate your donation to help keep our campaign going! Visit Bottle Drop Give HERE

For details of local area "green" events see the Events Calendar on our website.
If there's an event you think we should include please drop us a line at info @

Become a member of Recycling Advocates and help us continue to spread the word about waste prevention.  

Ways to Contribute:

  • By Mail: print and complete our Membership Form, mail it with your check to PO Box 6736, Portland, OR 97228-6736.
  • Visit our Website's Membership page
  • PayPal: use the button below to donate via PayPal using your credit card, bank account, or Paypal balance. 

Membership Levels 
Advocate $25 - Friend $50 - Supporter $100 - Sustainer $250
Gifts of any amount gratefully received.

Join at "Friend" level or above to be eligible to receive a Recycling Advocates/Rooster reusable coffee cup.

We thank you for your passion, support and commitment to protecting Oregon’s environment! 
Other Ways to Support Recycling Advocates

Here are some ways to contribute to Recycling Advocates that won't cost you a penny.

Fred Meyer Community RewardsFred Meyer Community Rewards: shop with your Fred Meyer Rewards Card, continue to earn your rewards points, fuel points and rebates, and Fred Meyer will donate to Recycling Advocates! Sign up here, and select Recycling Advocates, nonprofit number 90398. 

Amazon Smile: Amazon donates .5% of the price of your eligible purchases to RA whenever you shop at You'll see all your usual account settings and exactly the same products and pricing as at Learn more and sign up here

Good Search and Good ShopGoodSearch & GoodShop: Support RA and save money at and Find store coupons, coupon codes, discounts, deals and promo codes. Join here and select Recycling Advocates. 
Take the Pledge! 

BYOCVisit and add your name - pledge to:
Bring Your Own Cup
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