This Winter has been like a house guest that doesn’t know when they’ve overstayed their welcome. But look on the bright side, Spring begins on March 20th and the HCIA is ready for it with events planned for Hudson County residents!

Just Shred It

Identity theft tops the Federal Trade Commission’s national ranking of consumer complaints with over 15 million Americans affected annually. Nationwide, companies and individuals have fallen victim to identity theft and scams as the result of a loss of information contained in personal documents falling into the wrong hands. These documents should never be disposed of in your garbage can or your recycling bin, instead, they should be shredded.

With the safety of Hudson County residents and the environment in mind, the Hudson County Improvement Authority offers Mobile Shredding Days held on weekends at locations across the County. Visit the HCIA Mobile Shredding Events Page for our schedule of 2019 Shredding Days. Each HCIA Shredding Event is held 9 am to 2 pm, rain or shine.

Prior to arriving, please remove any large binder clips from documents. Also, make sure that documents are removed from plastic binders. Staples do not need to be removed and you can bring the documents in any type of container that is easiest for you to carry. Please limit your use of plastic bags as they can get caught up in the shredding mechanism. Residents are asked to limit your documents to no more than 40 pounds in an effort to accommodate all residents who wish to participate. Please bring a valid form of identification to verify your County residency. Residents are invited to stay and watch the shredding process if you wish.

What to Bring?

Consumer advocates recommend that documents that should be shredded include tax documents (more than 7 years old), investment statements, bank statements, canceled checks and paystubs. It is recommended that statements such as ATM receipts, credit card statements, utility bills and insurance policies be kept for two years, but once that time is up they should be shredded. However, if these documents can be accessed online, they can be shredded now. Mobile shredding provides residents with the piece of mind that sensitive information contained in these documents has been destroyed properly. The HCIA ensures that documents are commercially shredded safely and privately by trained, licensed and bonded document destruction specialists.

Shred It for the Environment

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that in the United States, over 250 million tons is produced daily across the country. Fortunately, once documents are shredded, the paper material produced is then recycled which yields enormous environmental benefits. Shredded paper can be recycled into many different consumer goods including paper plates and paper towels. One ton of recycled paper saves 7,000 gallons of water; 4,100 kilowatts of electricity; 60 pounds of air pollutants; 17 trees; 3 cubic yards of landfill; and 7,712 gallons of oil.

In addition, mobile shredding trucks are specially manufactured to treat the exhaust generated through a diesel particulate filter which traps the grime produced by the exhaust gas in order to reduce pollutants prior to releasing the filtered gas. Pretty cool, huh?

While You’re There, Pick up a Compost Bin and Rain Barrel!

This Spring, the HCIA will once again be selling compost bins and rain barrels at a discounted rate to Hudson County residents. Could your home use a compost bin and/or rain barrel? Read on and find out.

Make Your Own Humus!

A compost bin provides both environmental and financial benefits. An organic material, compost can be added to soil to support plant growth. Certain foods and yard waste can be placed into the compost bin saving them from being sent to a landfill in a plastic garbage bag. The EPA estimates that the materials that can be placed in a compost bin make up 20-30% of what a typical consumer throws away. In a landfill, these materials release methane, a potent greenhouse gas, as the decompose.

The soil produced in a compost bin is rich in nutrients and can be placed on flower beds, gardens and lawns. This material is also cheaper than the bags of compost purchased at a store. It is also a natural fertilizer which eliminates the need for chemical fertilizers.

Compost enriches the soil which helps it to retain moisture and suppress plant diseases and pests. Compost also encourages the production of good bacteria and fungi which creates humus- a rich, nutrient-filled material. Humus (not hummus, which is delicious!) is like a sponge which can hold up to 90% of its weight in water to allow soil to remain moist for weeks longer than soil without humus.

What can be placed in your compost bin? Organic materials such as coffee grinds, fruits and vegetables; egg shells; grass clippings; leaves; nut shells; shredded newspapers and fireplace ashes. Keep your compost bin free of certain materials such as meat or fish bones, yard clippings which have been treated with chemicals and pet waste.

Make the Most of a Rainy Day

A rain barrel captures and stores rainwater as it drains directly from a downspout. As it rains, the barrel fills with water to be used for watering plants, gardens and lawns. The barrel includes a spigot for filling watering cans as well as a connection for a hose. Utilizing a rain barrel helps to save money and the environment!

The EPA estimates that 40 percent of residential water use during the Summer is the result of garden and lawn irrigation. Rain barrels provide a free water source for irrigation purposes. Industry experts state that a half-inch of rain fills a typical 50-55 gallon rain barrel which eases the demand on the area’s water supply.

The water captured in a rain barrel is also healthier for plants and lawns, cleaning the soil of salt buildup and supporting root development. Inorganic ions and fluoride compounds typically found in tap water can accumulate in the soil which can harm plant roots over time.

The use of rain barrels reduce the flow of storm runoff which picks up materials such as soil, fertilizer, oil, pesticides and other contaminants which then can flow directly into waterways. These contaminants can increase algae growth which makes waterways dangerous to fish and humans. In addition, soil runoff in waterways effects the habitat for fish.

Industry experts also recommend the use of rain barrels with appropriate plant selection and mulching (using materials from a composting bin) to promote water conservation and an environmentally friendly garden!

We hope to see you at one of our Mobile Shredding and Compost & Rain Barrel Sale Events being held this Spring throughout Hudson County!

   

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