Tennessee State Parks offering more recycling options for visitors

Visitors at Tennessee State Parks now have more recycling options thanks to new bins delivered this month to all 56 parks.

“By encouraging recycling within our parks, we are meeting the needs of our visitors and upholding our responsibility to protect Tennessee’s public lands and natural resources,” said Brock Hill, deputy commissioner with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC). “We want Tennessee State Parks to be a leader in waste reduction and overall sustainability.”

Over 400 BearSaver recycling receptacles – heavy-duty, pest proof and ADA-compliant bins – are now available at all Tennessee State Parks for visitor use. The bins are comprised of three adjoined weatherproof, rustproof containers which accept aluminum, plastic and trash. Bins that accept paper and glass are also available for visitors at all parks.

“Our goal for these improvements is to not only divert waste from landfills, but to also increase awareness of the importance of recycling to state park visitors,” said Larry Christley with TDEC’s Division of Solid Waste Management, which provided funding for the bins.

The new exterior bins are part of a broader initiative within Tennessee State Parks known as the ‘Go Green With Us’ program, which promotes the integration of sustainable practices into park management and operations.

“We are looking to create a recycling program with a uniform appearance at all Tennessee State Parks to better inform visitors of their options for waste disposal,” said Kelsey Davis with TDEC’s Office of Policy and Sustainable Practices. “We hope this will encourage more visitors to recycle while at a park and elsewhere.”

Parks will soon feature new interior recycling bins as well as special event recycling stations at select parks.

For more information about the Go Green With Us initiative at Tennessee State Parks, visit https://tnstateparks.com/about/go-green-with-us.

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