Local Iron Man Leads Missouri's Reduction in Waste

7 years 8 months 4 hours ago Monday, December 03 2012 Dec 3, 2012 Monday, December 03, 2012 5:29:00 PM CST December 03, 2012 in News
By: Karl Roskamp
loading

CENTRALIA - Missourians have greatly decreased their waste generation over the past decade.

In 2001, Missourians waste 37 percent more per person compared to the national average according to the Missouri Recycling Association. Then, as the economy took a dip, so did waste levels. By 2008, Missouri had the lowest waste generation per person of any state according to a study by Biocycle and Columbia University.

"Waste generation is higher when the economy is robust; citizens are purchasing more goods," Missouri Recycling Association Executive Director Angie Gehlert said.

Recycling is one aspect of reducing waste and no one does it quite like Larry Vennard.

A welder by trade, Vennard was injured nearly two decades to the point where his doctor advised him not to continue welding.

"I've been welding my whole life. I didn't know anything besides welding," Vennard said. In need of something to occupy his time, he soon found the answer.

"I was out here messing with some iron one day and I thought, ‘Man, that looks like a dinosaur head.' I started to put some parts together and before I knew it, I had built myself a T-Rex."

Vennard now has a yard filled with a variety of sculptures, all made from recycled materials.

"I've had a lot of people come down and come back," he said.

While iron is his primary base, Vennard will use steel, oil barrels, tractor parts or water tanks to make his imagination come to life. His warrior sculptures don helmets that were once ice cream buckets and his T-Rex has a spine lined with fencing. Even though Vennard finds a way to recycle everything, Missourians do not.

"We're just average at recycling," Waste Minimization Supervisor Layli Terrill said. "Last year Columbians recycled 10,358 tons and that was just a little less than we did last year, so w'ere greatly disappointed."

In fact, 45 percent of municipal solid waste deposited in Missouri landfills could be recycled, including metals, paper, plastics and glass. If recycled, the potential value of those materials as commodities would be roughly $208 million.

While making recycled art might not be everyone's path for a greener tomorrow, Vennard encourages people to be creative.

"Everyone can develop that imagination like a muscle you know. The more you use it the stronger it will get."

 

 

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Columbia Public Schools Board of Education is considering the possibility of moving the start of school to after... More >>
4 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 10:46:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — From masks to hand sanitizer stations to new poll workers, the primary election Tuesday will look different... More >>
7 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 8:12:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA —Excellence, loyalty and perseverance are the principles Dr. Gus T. Ridgel lived by, according to his daughter Betty Bolden.... More >>
9 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 5:52:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
MISSOURI — As COVID-19 continues to spread throughout Missouri, state and local officials confirm new case counts daily. ... More >>
9 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 5:30:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
FAYETTE – Central Methodist University will reopen for the fall semester — with a long list of safety protocols. ... More >>
10 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 4:54:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Central Pantry, which serves Boone County residents, is reducing its hours in order to continue serving people in... More >>
10 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 4:54:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
NEW YORK (AP) — Seven St. Louis Cardinals players and six staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, causing Major... More >>
11 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 3:58:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — The Columbia Parks and Recreation department has canceled the Heritage Festival and Craft Show, according to a news... More >>
12 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 2:29:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 continues to spread, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about impacts in the community. You can... More >>
13 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 2:06:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Beef prices are slowly recovering after a dip from when beef processing plants were closed due to COVD-19,... More >>
13 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 2:00:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - City Manager John Glascock finalized an authorization of an ordinance to bring almost $1.8 million dollars to Boone... More >>
13 hours ago Monday, August 03 2020 Aug 3, 2020 Monday, August 03, 2020 2:00:00 PM CDT August 03, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - As summer school ends in the capital city, United Way of Central Missouri starts its Food 4... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, August 02 2020 Aug 2, 2020 Sunday, August 02, 2020 5:24:00 PM CDT August 02, 2020 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A baby elephant died several weeks after it was born at the St. Louis Zoo. ... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, August 02 2020 Aug 2, 2020 Sunday, August 02, 2020 3:37:55 PM CDT August 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - On Sunday, Battle High School students finally got to walk across the stage. The graduations were... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, August 02 2020 Aug 2, 2020 Sunday, August 02, 2020 2:54:00 PM CDT August 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Missourians will vote on August 4 on whether or not to pass Amendment 2. If passed, the amendment... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, August 02 2020 Aug 2, 2020 Sunday, August 02, 2020 2:50:00 PM CDT August 02, 2020 in Target 8
COLUMBIA - Primary election day is this Tuesday, August 4, and Boone County Government will be open for business as... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, August 02 2020 Aug 2, 2020 Sunday, August 02, 2020 2:32:00 PM CDT August 02, 2020 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A trial is set to start for a man charged in the 2017 killing of a transgender... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, August 02 2020 Aug 2, 2020 Sunday, August 02, 2020 12:03:00 PM CDT August 02, 2020 in News
CNN -- Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday that Pr esident Donald Trump "will take action in the coming... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, August 02 2020 Aug 2, 2020 Sunday, August 02, 2020 11:46:13 AM CDT August 02, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 59°
4am 58°
5am 57°
6am 58°
7am 58°