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20,000 Works of Art in Earth Day Recycling Collage

TOPEKA, Kansas, April 22, 2008 (ENS) – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s Bureau of Waste Management was looking for a unique way to promote recycling on Earth Day. The answer was close at hand.

Kansan and environmental artist Stan Herd agreed to create an environmental awareness collage using 20,000 pieces of artwork submitted as entries in the agency’s “Kansas – Don’t Spoil It” calendar contest by Kansas elementary, middle and high school students over the years.

One entry from each grade level has been featured on each month of the official “Kansas – Don’t Spoil It” calendar over the last decade – just 120 artworks that have ever been seen by the public. Now people can see many more as part of Herd’s collage.

Herd used that artwork to create a unique work of art of his own on the 80 by 110 foot Topeka Roadrunners ice rink at Landon Arena of the Kansas Expocentre in Topeka.

Kansas Lt. Governor Mark Parkinson, Kansas Department of Health and Environment Secretary Roderick Bremby and Herd officially dedicated the collage this morning at the arena.


Stan Herd’s collage just before completion at the Landon Arena in Topeka, Kansas (Photo courtesy KDHE)

“Recycling is important, and it’s something all Kansans can do to help maintain a healthy environment,” said Bremby. “As we celebrate Earth Day, I challenge all Kansans to become more environmentally friendly and strive to make it Earth Day everyday.”

As Herd worked to complete the collage, a time-lapse video camera recorded every movement and a video of him creating it was posted to YouTube. The collage was open to the public today from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.

Herd, whose past artworks have been created outdoors, is renowned for his commitment to environmental stewardship. He created a crop art project north of Wichita that was used on a “Get Caught Recycling!” poster to help the state environmental agency kick off that project in 2005.

The following year, Herd promoted recycling with a 12 day run.

For Earth Day 2008, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment launching a new website to raise awareness of the concern over electronic waste disposal in Kansas and throughout the world.

The site provides guidelines about how and what e-waste can be recycled, as well as a growing list of public and private e-waste collectors and processors in Kansas. The site is located at www.ksewaste.org.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment suggests five things everyone can do to have an immediate impact on the environment:

1. Recycle everything you can. Find recycling centers near you by visiting the Kansas Recycling Directory at www.kansasbirp.com/centerdirectory.asp.

2. Cut back on disposables. Bring your own mug to your local coffee house. You could get a discount, and it’s one less disposable cup that will end up in a landfill. Save money and cut back on the 860 million water bottles that are thrown away each week by investing in a reusable water bottle. Switch to reusable cups and dishes at home and work too.

3. Say no to plastic bags. Americans throw away 100 billion plastic bags a year. Next time you shop, take a reusable bag. The amount of oil it takes to make just 14 plastic bags would run your car for one mile. For more information on the plastic bag issue, visit www.ReusableBags.com.

4. Save water. Run the dishwasher and washing machine only when they are full. Take shorter showers and consider investing in a low flow showerhead.

5. Start a Green Team at your school or work. Visit the Kansas Green Teams website at: www.kansasgreenteams.org.

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