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Maattala was instrumental in Crow Wing County recycling program

John Maattala was instrumental with a number of Crow Wing County environmental programs. Doug Morris Crow Wing County solid waste coordinator noted that his contributions included:

1. Used oil tanks. Maattala worked with city councils and the used oil vendors to establish 11 drop-off sites throughout the county. He initiated the program in 2002 with two sites. Last year the county had 11 sites. In 2011, these sites took in 34,410 gallons of used oil or 14 percent of the used oil generated within the county. Plus an additional 1,200 gallons of antifreeze and 69 of 55-gallon drums of oil filters. From 2002 to 2011, a total of 310,700 gallons of used oil, 10,000 gallons of anti-freeze and 560 of 55-gallon drums of used oil filters have been environmentally managed.

2. Cleanup programs. Throughout his time, Maattala assisted with clean-up efforts in the city of Pequot Lakes, the annual Kiwanis clean-up blitz, city of Crosby, northeast and North Brainerd, Garrison Lions, Cinosam, and the city of Emily clean-up day. These clean-up days gave residents the opportunity to properly dispose of bulky items, such as tires, appliances, furniture, electronics.

3. Household hazardous Waste program. Before Maattala’s tenure the program averaged 280 participants per year, for the last three years the average significantly increased to 1,608 participants. He was also a huge promoter of the product exchange aspect. During the last three years more than 16,600 pounds of material was reused by county residents that was brought in. Since this program was started, more than 623 tons of toxic material were kept out of the landfill and managed properly.

4. Residential recycling. The last few years Maattala started to assist in this program. Many sites were upgraded and new sites added. From 2005 to 2010, the amount recycled by this program went up from 2,900 tons to 4,780 tons or a 65 percent increase.

5. Mattress program. He assisted in the implementation of the county now being able to have these items recycled. Now more than 50 percent of mattresses are being diverted from the landfill.

6. Used electronic. He assisted in the establishment of the used electronic program. The program deals with both electronics generated by businesses and residents. The business aspect started in 2001, and a total of 175 tons have been managed till 2002. The residential aspect did not start till 2004, and it has managed 800 tons of electronics by 2010. Similar to hazardous waste, this material has been diverted from the county landfill.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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