Greener Photography

July 28, 2010

What do you get after spending over three hours on the beach the night of Memorial Day? About 10 bags of recycling. Through the month of May, I spent every Sunday picking through garbage cans (I wore gloves), and collect all the recyclables. I’m not going to lie, it’s dirty, but it boggles my mind just how much recycling gets thrown out on St. Pete Beach, particularly on holidays. The images below show just a small sample of the recyclables to be thrown out… Imagine how much I could have collected with an entire team. The garbage cans we went through were overflowing, and probably 70% of the contents were bottles and cans.

You know it’s funny, St. Petersburg was designated the first “Green City” in Florida… I think Florida has a long way to go. Recycling bins next to each garbage bin on the beach would be such a simple solution. If you go to a city like Seattle, their recycling bins are much larger than their garbage cans, and if you leave too much recycling in your garbage can, the sanitation workers won’t take your garbage.

A couple of quick facts for you:

Florida generates over 29 million tons of solid waste per year. If you’re the typical Florida resident, you throw away 10 pounds of trash a day. Now you can recycle some of that trash and help mother earth.


Recycled glass reduces related air pollution by 20 percent and related water pollution by 50 percent. If it isn’t recycled it can take a million years to decompose. Every ton of glass recycled saves the equivalent of nine gallons of fuel oil needed to make glass from virgin materials.


Twenty recycled aluminium cans can be made with the energy it takes to manufacture one brand new one.

Nearly 90% of plastic water bottles are not recycled, instead taking thousands of years to decompose. Buy a reusable container and fill it with tap water, a great choice for the environment, your wallet, and possibly your health. The EPA’s standards for tap water are more stringent than the FDA’s standards for bottled water.

Each year the U.S. uses 84 billion plastic bags, a significant portion of the 500 billion used worldwide. They are not biodegradable, and are making their way into our oceans, and subsequently, the food chain. Stronger, reusable bags are an inexpensive and readily available option.

These fact were complements of Wire & Twine – 50 Ways to Help the Planet


OMG… I am so with you! Props to you on making the effort to help the environment. I am also a photographer in Tampa. Not sure how I tumbled upon your blog… but it’s on my “stalk” list. I am such a huge recycling nut too! I can’t believe that St. Pete doesn’t do local home recycling. I have a friend over in St. Pete and I ask her to bag it for me and I go over there and get it to put with mine. I had some friends stay over at Treasure Island in June. I saw them throwing it away and cringed. She told me they don’t pick it up over there so I told her to bag it all and I went back and got it before they left. Makes me sick more people don’t make an effort. Did you hear about the recycling program Aveda has? Here is the link. Check it out! I have started collecting them and plan on getting my daughter’s school involved when the new year starts! Thanks for sharing your story!

Love the pictures, really motivates each one of us to be responsible for the environment and do anything we can, every bit makes a difference. It’s our home and we need to take care of it as much as we can. GO GREEN!

Love the pictures Justin, wow you picked up alot! Really motivates each one of us to be responsible for the environment and do anything we can, every bit makes a difference. It’s our home and we need to take care of it as much as we can. GO GREEN!

that’s my boy! love this blog post brother, great job!

Awesome job, Justin! My mom and I have been asking for recycling bins at our office for months and we finally got them! Real estate agent toss out so much paper…and now it can all be recycled! We’ve had the bins for a week, and they’ve been filled and emptied twice already. Thank you for cleaning up the planet. I’m sure she appreciates your efforts! 🙂

You are so GREEN!! I love it!! Hope you are well!! Xoxo

that is definitely what I was searching for, You have saved me alot of time