Green Team shreds for recycling day

The Mahoning County Green Team is celebrating America Recycles Day by inviting citizens to bring paper documents to a mass-shredding event in Wick Park.

Thursday’s event will benefit the environment while helping people safely dispose of documents that may contain personal information. The shredding is free, and participants can bring up to five full boxes of papers.

Jim Petuch, the county recycling director, said America Recycles Day is like the autumn’s version of Earth Day.

“It’s a national day to recognize the importance of recycling, and it’s gotten better and better every year I’ve been involved,” Petuch said.

Though the event is not associated exclusively with Youngstown State University, Petuch said he hopes to see a showing from YSU students, who may have a lot of paperwork from courses this semester or from past semesters.

“We encourage students to bring personal documents or anything they’d like to have shredded,” Petuch said.

Petuch said he considers YSU one of the Mahoning County Green Team’s most important partners.

However, YSU will not be bringing its documents to the event because of a contract with Protect-N-Shred, a Cortland-based shredding company, said Dan Kuzma, manager of YSU’s recycling program. 

“All the documents from YSU that are shredded do get recycled,” Kuzma said.

Kuzma said he encourages individuals to participate in shredding events to benefit the environment and their own personal security.

Petuch said similar shredding events usually draw a crowd of around 150 people that bring a combined average of nine tons of recycled paper.

“It really saves a lot of trees,” Petuch said. “We bring in nine tons of paper that could have been thrown in the garbage and is instead recycled.”

The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and the shredded paper will be brought to one of two recycling facilities in Mahoning County.