The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has awarded Wasco County a $23,084 solid waste grant to assist the StRUT (Students Recycling Used Technology) Program.
StRUT is a statewide, education-based program managed and operated by the Region 9 Education Service District. The program provides donated computers, parts and peripherals to K-12 schools and community colleges throughout Oregon. Through the program, students expand their knowledge of computers and have the opportunity to repair, upgrade and refurbish operational computer systems. Students gain marketable skills, schools gain much-needed technology, and the environment benefits from the recovery of resources from electronic waste rather than its disposal in landfills, StRUT officials say.
Monies from this grant, which will be administered by Wasco County, will be used for the purchase of a truck to expand electronics collection. Currently, StRUT relies on volunteers to pick up and transport donated equipment from schools and donors in the area to StRUT’s Petersburg School facility on 15 Mile Road in The Dalles. By purchasing a truck, StRUT will be able to handle pickups directly and be able to attend more recycling events, which will help increase program participation. The truck will also increase the frequency of equipment pickups from the Portland area.
The StRUT grant is among the 15 that DEQ’s Solid Waste Program is awarding in 2007. These grants help communities promote solid waste prevention/reduction and conduct household hazardous waste collection programs. DEQ is awarding about $475,000 in grants this year.
In most cases grant recipients and/or their partners contribute some type of matching monies, staff time or services. StRUT, for example, is receiving matching monies totaling $41,965 this fiscal year from the Region 9 Education Service District and from Intel Corp. as part of this DEQ grant.
The DEQ Solid Waste Grants Program, established by the Oregon Legislature, is funded through fees on solid waste disposal throughout the state. Since the first grant round in 1991, DEQ has awarded 262 grants totaling nearly $5.5 million.