Victoria dry cleaners participates in plastic bag recycling program

April 22, 2011 at 4 p.m.
Updated April 21, 2011 at 11:22 p.m.

Nationwide, 1.4 billion pieces of clothing and other items are dry cleaned annually, according to data from the Dry cleaning and Laundry Institute.

At three articles of clothing per polyethylene bag, that means at least 466 million bags, or 86 million pounds, of bags left in closets or taking up space in landfills a year.

And one Victoria dry cleaning company hopes to do its part to change that.

Comet Cleaners joined with other dry cleaning companies in FabriClean Supply's Poly Recycling Program.

Throughout the program, customers can deposit poly bags in a collection box inside Comet's lobby at 3808 N. Navarro St. FabriClean Supply then collects the bags and distributes them to companies that recycle them into items such as fencing, children's outdoor play sets and more.

FabriClean began working toward "greening" the dry cleaning and laundry industry more than two years ago, said Terry Stanton, FabriClean's vice president of sales.

FabriClean delivers about 15 truckloads of plastic products to customers each month, said Dan Svatek, who owns Comet Cleaners.

Each ton of garment film FabriClean collects saves the equivalent of 17 trees, 380 gallons of oil, 7,000 gallons of water, 4,100 kilowatt hours of electricity or 89 cubic feet of landfill, Svatek said.

"If even half of that amount is reclaimed and recycled, it will have a very positive environmental impact," he said, explaining it also reduces dependence on foreign oil. "Recycling plastic bags and turning them into other plastic products simply makes good sense."



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