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Go green by recycling aluminum

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TYLER (KYTX) - Super Shredder Day kicks off at 8 a.m. Wednesday morning in the CBS19 parking lot. You can recycle all your unwanted papers and electronics.

Of course, there are plenty of other items you can recycle all year long. Another popular one- aluminum cans.

When you throw them away, they get put into landfills. It takes about 200 years for one aluminum can to break down in a landfill. When you recycle your cans though, they can be melted down and made into anything that's aluminum.

Donna Kelley recycles cans and pretty much anything the recycling center in Tyler will take.

"Whether it's, you know, scrap paper, bimetal cans, aluminum..."

She drops her items off every week.

"Because there's too much trash." she says.

"Every three months, the United States goes through enough aluminum to rebuild the entire commercial airline fleet."

Tyler Recycling Collection Center coordinator Gary Lynch says there are about 310,000 cans made every minute nationwide. But, only about 113,000 of them get recycled.

"It's a very, very disparaging figure, but it is increasing."

"That should be the norm." says Kelley. "And, it has become more the norm here in Tyler."

Wise Elementary student Kylee Bentley says her brother got their family into recycling.

"He said, 'we need to start recycling cans.'"

And, she knows how to do it all by herself.

"You like, grab it and you drop it in there." she says. 

But, Lynch says before you do that, you should rinse the cans out and crush them.

"So, we can save space and get more aluminum in each bin. Then, we take this bin and we put it in a compactor."

From there, the cans get crushed into 360 pound square bales that are sent off to be melted and remade into new aluminum.

"We average about eight to 12 tons of aluminum recycled per year, which is not nearly as much as it could be if more people were to recycle." says Lynch. 

Six-year-old Ju-Keysten Campbell says recycling helps create a clean environment for younger generations to enjoy.

"Recycling is important because you have to clean the world to keep it safe."

And, Kelley says that's everyone's responsibility.

"It feels like, you know, that's what we should all be doing."

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