Kansas City Glass Recycling


…alternatively titled “Everything I didn’t know about Ripple Glass”

The Fox used to live in a big East Coast city and in that big East Coast city, you could recycle everything.  Throw it all in a giant, city provided trash can, and people would magically whisk it away every week.  So, we had to admit some confusion when we moved to Kansas City and you couldn’t recycle glass.  We’re well into the 2000′s, so this shouldn’t be a problem.

Ripple Glass

Recently I picked up some literature on Ripple Glass, our local glass recycler which has given me some of the background, and some interesting facts to boot so I thought I’d share them.

“Last year alone, Kansas Citians threw away 150 million pounds of perfectly good glass.  TO the dismay of the people at Boulevard Brewing Company, this included some 10 million empty Bouulevard bottles… why almost no local recycling? Because there was no nearby facility to process the glass.  And why no local processor?  Because, in classic chicken and egg fashion, there was almost no local recycling.”

“The folks at Boulevard finally got tired of being part of the problem.  So… they came up with a solution–Ripple Glass.  Ripple has constructed a state of the art processign plant right here in KC… [and] found a local customer what will convert the recycled glass into fiberglass insulation.”

Cool story.  And a few other interesting facts

  • Throughout the US, nearly 30% of glass containers are recycled but KC ranks last among major cities with a recycling rate of only 5%.
  • Collecting glass separate from the rest of your recycled materials keeps the paper and plastic products from being contaminated by broken glass.  This contamination means the plastics and paper can only be used for lower-quality products.  By using a segregated system, the quality of all recyclables is maintained.
  • A six pack of recycled beer bottles produces enough fiberglass insulation to fill a standard wall cavity

So now I have to admit, I kind of prefer Kansas City’s system to the East Coast city system–now we just need more and more people to use it!

Chipotle hearts Brookside?


We’re hearing word that everyone’s favorite burritto resturaunt was promoting local farmers markets this weekend.  Apparently the first 250 customers this weekend (I’m assuming at the Main Street location but don’t actually know) received tokens that got them $10 off at the Brookside Farmer’s market.

I dig that.  Although Chipotle probably has a bigger impact on the food market by actually buying from local farmers–which their website says they’d do.  I’d love to hear from local farmers about how that program works–the fox will do some sleuthing to find out.  In the mean time, we’re any of you readers in the lucky 250?

University of Kansas City?


Image courtesy University News

There’s been buzz as of late about UMKC changing it’s name to some variation of University of Kansas City or KCU or something of the sorts.  The idea would be to separate the brand from Mizzou some and help people realize that the school is a major, unique school in it’s own right.  Changing the name would have no bearing on the school’s continued relationship with the UM system.

According to a small and anecdotal survey of students by the independent student paper, Carpet Cleaning Kansas City, it appears most students are against the name change.  KCUR also recently did a segment with administration officials where they talk about motivations for the name change.

From the sounds of the KCUR piece, the administration is in no hurry to force this change–it is something that will be well thought out.

A lot of Missouri schools have been changing their name lately, UM-Rolla is now Missouri University of Science and technology.  Southwest Missouri State changed their name to simply Missouri State.  And back in the 80′s, Northeast Missouri State University changed it’s name to Truman State to indicate it’s pivot towards being a liberal arts college (go Bulldogs!).  I’m still not used to the Rolla change but I think the Mo State and Truman changes were for the better as they helped give each school some distinction.  Moreover, I think Kansas City has suffered from not having a strong university that can draw graduate students and keep KC’s best and brightest in the city.  That has changed a lot in the past twenty years–the Bloch school is consistently highly rated now, and the Medical schools remain a huge draw.  I think it would serve KC well to have the school branded as Kansas City rather than some long acronym that no one outside of the state recognizes.

But, I’m just one fox.  What do you think??