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BEC's Waste Reduction Education Program

The Recycling and Rubbish Education Program (RARE)

RARE (Recycling and Rubbish Education) is a Butte County funded program hosted by the Butte Environmental Council that seeks to educate Butte County's community about the solid waste stream and the importance of the 4R's: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Rot (compost). The RARE program provides FREE hands-on, interactive, and fun educational workshops for ages K-12 in the areas of Recycling, Compost, and Auto Oil Recycling. During these trying times, RARE is dedicated to providing education and information on the topics covered in our typical workshops: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Rot (Compost)! We want to give you plenty of opportunities to continue the lessons out of the classroom. Download our RARE Activity Guides and you will find lesson plans, educational videos, crafts, and upcycling projects that you can do from the comfort of your house! It is easy to reduce your waste, get creative, and have fun while learning about ways to care for the Earth.

Take a look at our 2019-2020 Year in Review of the RARE Program!

Learn what YOU can do to cut down on waste, prolong the life of the Neal Road Recycling and Waste Facility, and take care of our planet!

Click an icon below for more information about a specific RARE program

OR check out our Teacher's Resources Page to find worksheets, curriculum, and visuals for teaching the "Four R's".

classroom workshop oil recycling
Field Trips

More about RARE

The Recycling and Rubbish Education (RARE) program has been an innovative and successful county-wide, county-funded educational outreach program since 2001. RARE was originally facilitated by CSU Chico as an educational exhibit until 2012. In 2013, Butte Environmental Council was selected to carry on and improve the legacy. Following a 3 year hiatus from 2016-2019, RARE was brought back after 

RARE has developed various mobile educational materials which accompany the RARE facilitators as they visit 45 or more classrooms and 6 or more public outreach events each year, allowing us to greatly increase our education and engagement.

RARE in the News:

10/25/2020 Enterprise-Record — Rubbish Education Goes Virtual!
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.  [Includes 3 short videos of RARE in action!]
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.
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. [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. BEC Board of Directors president, Mark Stemen states, “For BEC, this recycling education program takes us back to our roots."

Butte County Recycling: 

Click here to be redirected to, a website for all recycling information for Butte County. Including locations for drop-off of mattresses, e-waste, hazardous waste, tires, and more.

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Office: (530) 891-6424