Teton Valley Community Recycling is inspired by WorldCast Anglers who are leading the way to “Kick Plastic” in Teton Valley. WorldCast purchased this water station that sits outside their shop in Victor. Through this initiative, the small business is eliminating 40-50,000 single serve plastic bottles this summer. Please read below on how TVCR is hoping you will “Bring Your Own Bottle” to the Tin Cup Challenge and take advantage of the JH20 water station on July 16!
This piece orginally appeared in the Teton Valley News July 14, 2016 issue as TVCR’s regular colunm, Recycled News.
By Jeannette Boner
It’s a fact that the human population throws away 200 billion plastic bottles a year. Thirty-five billion of those bottles are thrown away in the United States alone with 10 percent of that plastic ending up in the worlds’ oceans and waterways.
In Victor, Idaho, WorldCast Anglers took note of these staggering figures and then did their own math. Mike Dawes and Mike Dawkins, president and vice president of WorldCast estimated that their small business alone was using 40,000 – 50,000 single serve plastic bottles at the height of the fly-fishing season.
“We would be sifting through the empty plastic water bottles used after a guide trip and would see that the value of waste was disappointing,” said Dawkins last week. “Especially for a company that relies on our natural resources for business, this was disappointing.”
“And the waste from 40,000 – 50,000 bottles of water — is insane,” said Dawkins pausing to think about that number. “These bottles are made from cheap plastic that sits in warehouses with large sways in temperature and these bottles contain BPA that is leeching into the bottled water. You’re not doing yourself a favor by drinking bottled water. It’s harming you and the environment.”
It took a couple years to lay the ground work and a host of business partnerships for WorldCast to launch “Kick Plastic,” a world-wide environmental intuitive lead by Costa Del Mar.
“Costa Del Mar lead with the big push to kick plastic,” said Dawkins. “They made the first assault on single serving plastic waste in the fishing industry. We tried to look at our situation from the 20,000-foot level. This stuff doesn’t get recycled, it’s down-cycled, and part of our strategic statement of our business is that we strive to support our environment. If that’s a core portion of who we are, we need to take stances with single serving bottles.”
Costa Del Mar supported WorldCast by providing the discounted stainless steel water bottles that each client receives before a fishing trip. They also provided the educational support to WorldCast that allows guides to explain the intuitive to sometimes reluctant clients.
And then Yeti Coolers got on board with WorldCast Anglers and provided $25K worth of products to support the Kick Plastic campaign. Yeti gave each guide their own stainless steel water bottle, a growler for refills on the boat and a cooler to keep the water, well, cool.
“This is company policy now that we don’t provide single serving plastic water bottles,” said Dawkins. “If people want it, they can buy it.”
WorldCast Anglers then purchased the water re-fill station that sits outside in front of the store in Victor. After all, said Dawkins, you can’t have 40 guides running into the shop to fill up water bottles and growlers before the start of each day.
“From our perspective, we made a large monetary investment to launch this program and initiative because we need to make a difference,” said Dawkins. “And we hope that by leading by example we can inspire other fly fishing outfitters and service oriented business to make an impact too. If a fly fishing company in Victor, Idaho can do this, then the possibilities for other businesses are endless out there. It’s a step towards decreasing our environmental impact and dependence on plastic and that’s how I look at it.”
And we’re inspired.
TVCR is inspired by businesses like WorldCast. See our story below and learn how TVCR is partnering with the Community Foundation of Teton Valley to launch new green initiatives at this year’s Tin Cup Challenge including a free water fill-up station.