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Upcoming Events


This event brings together local environmental organizations and their supporters for a night of conversation and celebration.  This reception is the final event of the This Way to Sustainability conference taking place at CSU, Chico on March 24-25.


A day of free entertainment and education for all ages with music, activities, a rescued animal show and a larger-than-life puppet parade.


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Recycling and Rubbish Education (RARE)


The RARE program offers informative and hands-on workshops for all schools in Butte County in order to communicate to students the importance of responsible waste disposal practices using the "Four R's" - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Rot.


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  classroom workshop     Field Trips    oil recycling    
Butte Environmental Council is contracted with Butte County to operate this countywide educational outreach program with funding from Butte County Public Works, primarily through landfill tipping fees.
From 2001-2012, the RARE program was an innovative and fantastically successful County-funded program facilitated through CSU, Chico. RARE educated hundreds of thousands of K-12 Butte County students and their parents about recycling through hands-on, interactive education. 
In 2013, BEC was selected to carry on the successful legacy of the RARE program.
The RARE program will travel to schools throughout Butte County to present age-appropriate hands-on curriculum on recycling and the importance of reusing, reducing, and rotting (composting). RARE also coordinates fieldtrips to the landfill which give students the profound opportunity to learn firsthand that “there is no away”. A new component of the program is to provide targeted education about the importance of recycling used motor oil with in-class presentations to high school auto shop classes. Recycling education and information is be provided to the general public through community fairs and festivals throughout the county.

Check out our Teacher's Resources Page to find worksheets, curriculum, and visuals for teaching recycling, composting, and re-using.

Browse through our archive for helpful and informative articles about recycling, reducing, re-using, and RAD-NESS.   

RARE in the News:

9/12/2013 - Action News Now -- After being on hiatus for a year, a local recycling education program is making its way back to Butte County. Starting next month, the Butte Environmental Council will be traveling to schools to provide interactive workshops on waste reduction. The council recently took over the program from Chico State and will be shutting down its hands-on recycling museum that operated for 11 years on Southgate Lane. Some of the exhibit items will be made mobile so they can be incorporated into the classroom. [Includes video of news broadcast.]

9/3/2013 - Gridley Herald -- The Butte Environmental Council (BEC) is excited to announce the return of RARE – The Recycling and Rubbish Education program. RARE is a Butte County funded program and after more than a year of negotiation, a proposal submission process and a vote by the Butte County Board of Supervisors, BEC was selected to carry on the successful legacy of the RARE program. BEC Board of Directors president, Mark Stemen states, “For BEC, this recycling education program takes us back to our roots. BEC started the first recycling program in Chico decades ago and now, today, it’s the perfect complement to our education efforts.”

11/3/2013 - Growing Up Chico -- When it comes to waste, “there is no away.” This is an important life lesson that the Butte Environmental Council hopes to impart to local students, teachers and community members with their new recycling education program.

11/22/2013  OROVILLE Mercury Register — Grade-school children were full of questions and comments Thursday as they participated in a workshop on recycling at Bird Street School.  The event started as Tanya Parrish, of Recycling and Rubbish Education, or RARE, asked the students to raise their hands if they'd thrown something away. [Includes 3 short videos of RARE in action!]

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