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Choctaw Nation, Durant Join in Recycling Effort



DURANT – Building a partnership is not always an easy task, but it is a positive step, and it is a priority with the Choctaw Nation. One of the tribe’s latest partnerships is with the City of Durant in a joint effort to recycle trash.

“It’s something we’ve wanted to do for a while,” Tracy Horst, Director of Environmental Sustainability for the Choctaw Nation, said about teaming up with the city.

The unveiling of the first City of Durant-Choctaw Nation Recycling Bin is outside of Durant City Hall, 300 W. Evergreen St. at noon Tuesday (Nov 8). The public is invited to attend the short ceremony.

The Choctaw Nation has had a recycling program in operation for more than three years, collecting and sorting trash to recycle from all of its facilities.

The Choctaw Nation operates two recycling centers, one in Durant and another in Poteau. Horst oversees both. The sites are also open to the general public to drop off aluminum, plastics, cardboard and more.
Durant officials have considered recycling, including curbside recycling service for residents, for some time. The partnership with the Choctaw Nation is the inaugural project for the city.

The City of Durant has six used trash dumpsters in good condition that it is no longer using because the city has gone to a different sized bin. The city is in the process of refurbishing and painting the old white dumpsters a royal blue. “It’s a color often associated with recycling,” said Horst, and it is the color of the Choctaw Nation recycling bins.
After reconditioning the bins, the Choctaw Nation will add a shrink wrap décor.

The city will have the bins placed at various locations for convenience for residents, and the Choctaw Nation will maintain the containers with regular pick up.

Acceptable items for dropping into the bins are aluminum, other metals, plastics, paper, newspapers, and cardboard.

“It will be helpful if the items are bagged,” said Jason Lilly, Recycling Coordinator for the Choctaw Nation in Durant.
There are high expectations about the new partnership and what it will mean to Durant, not only for the environment but safety and cost.