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This, that and the other…

A little bit about some path – and non-path – items this morning.

My weekly haul set out this morning for the recycling truck weighed about 30 pounds. I may need to recalculate the yearly poundage that is summarily removed from circulation. If this week’s total holds true in a week-by-week average, that works out to more than 1,500 lbs. liberated from my immediate environment. What’s depressing is this: my path is one single 2.5 mile stretch. How many miles are in Charlotte that are trashy and unkempt?

This week's take is a jumble of stuff - but it is off the street. I did a crummy job of sorting it. I'll ask for forgiveness later.

This week’s take is a jumble of junk. I did a crummy job of sorting it by trash type: plastic, polystyrene, paper, metal – but it is at least off the street. I’ll ask for forgiveness later.



So there is a use for plastic bags beyond hauling groceries and merchandise (and my trash).

Researchers at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center say oil-based plastic bags can be converted in diesel, natural gas and other useful petroleum products.

The conversion from plastic to useful fuel is significantly higher – 80 percent – when compared to the 50 – 55 percent fuel from the distillation of petroleum crude oil.

Shopping bags have other recyclable uses, too: gasoline, waxes, lubricating oils and natural gas.

All the more reason to recycle.


The North Carolina Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is a day late and a dollar short when it comes to protecting the public after the Feb. 2 “spill” of millions of tons of contaminant-laden coal ash from a Duke Energy holding pond into the Dan River.

Only on Feb. 28 did the DENR issue other “Enforcement Actions” against several other Duke-owned plants with adjacent coal ash ponds that hold potential for similar environmental disasters. The DENR denies a cozy relationship with Duke but media reports belie those assertions.

The DENR also says it will begin to sample tissue from fish to gauge the extent of the damage to organisms wholly dependent on the Dan. The DENR will follow up next year with similar tests to see if the river has cleansed itself. If they find fish tissue to be a ‘recyclable material’ because of all the metals and chemicals contained therein, then we’re all in trouble.

About Dave Bradley (264 Articles)
I was a writer by trade so one would think letters would come easily for me. It is so now, but wasn't always that way. Indeed, the first letter was written the Monday after Ellen started her freshman year in college. For years I've wondered - with no good answers - why I swiveled my office chair toward my computer screen to fire up a word processing document for that first letter. I just don't know. I just did. Perhaps it was the angst of separation or wanting to say things that had gone unsaid at that moment when we parted ways in front of her college dormitory. What was a one-off became habitual. When her brother Reid enrolled in the same college, his name was added to the salutation line. They were kids then and are adults now. No matter. The letter writing habit remains so today. I live in Brevard, North Carolina. I'm well away from where they live and don't see them nearly as often as I'd like. That's why letters, at least to me, fill the void of distance. The pages give me something to say and the space to say it. There is no assurance they read the letters; indeed, I have never asked if they do so. With the pace of their busy lives who could blame them for letting a letter sit unopened? Over time, it has dawned on me that the letters are both communicative - and cathartic. By nature, letters are about the writer; the writer can only write about their situation. Perhaps that is as it should be. It's all about the here and now from one person's perspective.

2 Comments on This, that and the other…

  1. Bob Furstenau // March 5, 2014 at 3:21 pm // Reply

    Charlotte must be one of the messiest cities on the planet!

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