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Traveling Through: Tree planting

AAA recycles four million auto batteries, 90 million pounds of lead
Posted: 04/21/2010
Stephanie Mlot

AAA has recycled more than four million automotive batteries and continues to promote the environmental importance of recycling this essential automotive part that 100 million U.S. motorists replace each year. Approximately 97 percent of all the lead in spent automotive batteries is recyclable.


Through the automotive battery recycling efforts of the AAA Mobile Battery Service and the AAA Approved Auto Repair network, AAA has recycled nearly 90 million pounds of lead in addition to 12 million pounds of plastic. The auto club first began its mobile battery recycling efforts in 1997, and this year, AAA anticipates it will replace and recycle an additional one million batteries via its roadside battery replacement service. Regionally, AAA Mid-Atlantic recycles over 90,000 batteries a year on average throughout their five state territory, as well as the District of Columbia.


"AAA Mid-Atlantic encourages all motorists to recycle their old automotive batteries. Many don't realize that car batteries contain a high level of lead content. Lead-acid batteries can be highly toxic, so it's imperative that they always be disposed of properly and not be left sitting around the house or discarded with the trash," said Ragina C. Averella, manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic.


In honor of Earth Day, April 22, AAA Mid-Atlantic will be planting trees in America's National Forests, literally, on behalf of their members who take advantage of AAA Mid-Atlantic's Mobile Battery Service program. For every AAA member who calls AAA Mid-Atlantic to have a new car battery installed and the old battery recycled, the auto club will have a tree planted in the national forest. The tree plantings are made possible through the Arbor Day Foundation, a non-profit conservation and education organization.


"AAA understands the tremendous impact recycling car batteries has in terms of reducing toxic waste and unnecessary production of new materials. Sixty to 80 percent of car batteries are made up of hard rubber or plastic and recycling lessens the demand for original materials required for new products," commented Averella.


"AAA Mid-Atlantic is pleased to not only do their part in recycling used car batteries to help protect the earth, but to help sustain the environment by contributing to the greening of America through the planting of trees."


As a benefit to members, AAA's Mobile Battery Service travels to a member's location to test their batteries, replace those that are spent and recycle the old battery for them.


AAA Members can call 866-AAA-AUTO (866-222-2886) for AAA's Mobile Battery Service or visit www.aaamidatlantic.com/CarsDriving/MobileBattery.




AAA Mid-Atlantic press release



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State Highway Administration goes green throughout central Maryland
Posted: 10/08/2009
Stephanie Mlot

Last week, the Maryland Department of Transportation's State Highway Administration began a $354,000 project to plant trees along various medians and forested wetlands in Baltimore, Harford, Carroll, Frederick and Howard counties.

Below is SHA's press release about the plantings.

The tree planting project will be completed fall 2010, weather permitting. The first planting is in the median of MD 43 (Whitemarsh Boulevard) between US 40 (Pulaski Highway) and MD 150 (Eastern Boulevard).

SHA is planting more than 4,560 trees in medians, roadsides and wetlands in Baltimore and Harford counties and an additional 11,055 trees in Carroll, Howard and Frederick counties. The tree plantings are part of the One Million Trees, which is part of Governor Martin O’Malley’s Smart, Green and Growing Initiative. So far, SHA has partnered with other State agencies to plant nearly 160,000 trees as part of the initiative.

Planting trees reduces SHA’s inventory of areas to mow, further helping to reduce greenhouse gas emission from mowers and operational costs to SHA. Trees are important to creating a sustainable environment. An acre of mature trees can absorb an equal amount of carbon dioxide produced by a car driven 26,000 miles per year. Trees also stabilize top soil and save energy by shading surfaces during summer months. The project, lasting up to two years, will also help employ up to 10 people from the region.

This project is made possible through Governor Martin O’Malley’s aggressive management of the requirements of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, bringing critically needed transportation investments to Maryland. Projects such as these are stimulating Maryland’s economy by supporting hundreds of jobs. Follow the delivery of these projects at www.recovery.maryland.gov, which tracks every category of ARRA spending and provides contract-level details to the public in an effort to achieve new levels of government transparency and efficiency.

Introduced by Governor Martin O’Malley in October 2008, Maryland’s Smart, Green & Growing initiative was created to strengthen the state’s leadership role in fostering smarter, more sustainable growth and inspiring action among all Marylanders to achieve a more sustainable future. The initiative brings together state agencies, local governments, businesses and citizens to create more livable communities, improve transportation options, reduce the state’s carbon footprint, support resource based industry, invest in green technologies, preserve valuable resource lands and restore the health of the Chesapeake Bay.

SHA’s contractor for the project is Greenkeeper Environmental, Inc. of Ashton. Those who have questions about tree plantings throughout the State may call SHA’s Office of Environmental Design toll-free at 1-800-446-5962.

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