Giving back to the earth
YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- Two hundred and sixty five and 66 pounds; the respective amount of trash and recyclables collected during Earth Week at Yokota Air Base, Japan.
Residents from Yokota and the surrounding community participated in various activities April 19-26, which promoted and focused on recycling.
"Every April 22, Air Force installations around the world observe Earth Day by taking actions to enhance sustainability," said Tech. Sgt. Kyle O'Hara, 374th Civil Engineer Squadron environmental section chief. "Yokota extended this special day to a week- wide event then called Earth Week."
The largest event, a fence-line cleanup, brought together more than 100 U.S. and Japan Airmen and their families. This was the first bilateral cleanup event ever held at Yokota.
"Collecting trash prevents it from entering the storm drains on and around Yokota. These storm drains lead into Tama River and eventually the ocean," said O'Hara. "If litter enters the storm drain, it may kill fish and other marine animals."
Additionally, students from Joan K. Mendel Elementary School and Yokota High School participated in tours at recycling centers and wastewater treatment plants on and off base.
The base library also held a flower planting and used book fair for base residents.
"These events provided a great opportunity for us to do something interactive with our patrons, especially the children, providing them with a sense of accomplishment and the responsibility for making the world greener," said Samuel Richards, 374th Force Support Squadron library director.
Yokota has participated in Earth Week since 1998.