The system of using can and bottle return machines causes...

The system of using can and bottle return machines causes angst among several readers, who wish recycling could be different.  Credit: AP/Ed White

I found it funny when I moved from Mattituck to South Carolina in 2009, there wasn’t a deposit on beverage containers ["Fix recycling bottle return system," Just Sayin’, Feb. 27]. I also was shocked to see that litter along the highways seemed to be less than on Long Island. How could that be?

What I found more amazing was that upon entering a supermarket in the South, there weren’t recycling machines in the lobbies and all that went with them such as smells, bugs and grime. We expect supermarkets to be clean, not a place where people unload their trash.

I return to the East End in the summer, and my first reaction last year was how dirty and grimy supermarket entrances were, compared to where I live in the Charleston area.

Even today in South Carolina, I have not observed a tremendous amount of litter in the streets, including cans and bottles. The state has its share of litterbugs, but for the most part, people are respectful toward other people and the environment.

Trash and recyclables belong as part of waste management, under the control of the appropriate town governments.

— Bill Bladykas, Summerville, South Carolina

One of the major problems involve those who see recycling as a supplement to their income.

It’s one thing to bring an acceptable number of bottles and cans to a recycling location, but another for a person to show up with multiple garbage bags filled with these recyclables, often filling the machines or jamming them so that others cannot use them.

All things should be done in moderation.

— Mike Baard, Merrick

I go to different stores to purchase the items that I need. I return 90% of my bottles to one store because the other store’s machines are full, broken or not even open. Those bottles go into the garbage. I am not even allowed to take them into the store for a refund.

I believe we should be able to take any bottle for a deposit to any store.

Some stores make it easier and have the plastics and cans in the same machine.

— Diana Carannante, East Meadow

I always felt there must be a better way to recycle bottles without going from store to store. I hope the bigwigs take this to heart.

— Lois Finkel, Plainview

As a person who works for a retail beer distributor, I see about 600 to 1,000 returns daily. You have to return bottles to the appropriate store because if a retailer does not sell that product, the retailer will lose money — manufacturers accept only their own drinks. The only reason you have to separate bottles is different manufacturers.

If you want to help recycling and the environment, put deposits on all drinks. These beverages, for example, do not have five-cent deposits: Snapple, Gatorade and gallon water jugs.

— Russell Moss, Amityville

Give hope with Alzheimer’s funds

The COVID-19 pandemic underscored the importance of medical research. Imagine where we would be today if the research that produced vaccines and treatments hadn’t been in development years before the pandemic hit. As Congress continues to address the needs of those impacted by COVID-19, it also needs to invest in another devastating disease — Alzheimer’s. More than 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s, including more than 400,000 New Yorkers.

There still is no cure for Alzheimer’s. I know because I cared for my mother as she deteriorated and lost her battle to dementia.

Congress can seek increased funding for Alzheimer’s and dementia research at the National Institutes of Health, providing Americans with hope.

Scientists could work faster to advance basic disease knowledge, explore ways to reduce risk, uncover biomarkers for early diagnosis, and make discoveries for a cure. We can’t afford not to fund research.

— Nancy Chandler, Southold

The writer is on the board of directors of the Long Island Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.

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