A White Bear Lake woman has the start small, think big mentality it takes to get things done. Lisa Biever's thing is keeping discarded fishing line out of the environment.
She took it upon herself to build PVC tubes that serve as depositories for used monofilament. White Bear Plumbing donated the supplies and the city's parks department installed them. There are five recycling tubes on the west side of the lake: at Veteran's Park fishing pier, Matoska Park, Lions Park and two near the Boatworks marinas.
“My husband Chris (Black) calls me a 'bleeding heart,'” Biever said. “He laughs at me sometimes but supports me and is a huge light in my life. He helped me make them.”
Biever is amazed there aren't more places to recycle line around the state's 10,000-plus lakes. The couple, both White Bear grads, love to fish and they love to travel. Recycling bins for monofilament are common on the East Coast and Florida, Biever said. “Why don't we have them? I've looked and the only place I saw some is in Dakota County. A Boy Scout troop built them.”
When disposed of improperly, monofilament can be hazardous to marine life, scuba divers and even boat propellers. When put in the trash, the nylon line can end up harming wildlife at landfills.
Biever will maintain the five city tubes, installed just two weeks ago. She will collect the line and ship it to an Iowa fishing line company for recycling. The address was provided by the U.S. Boat Foundation.
“Used monofilament doesn't need to be out there in the environment when there is someone who will recycle it,” she maintained. Her goal is to grow the recycling bin locations, eventually turning the collection duty over to the state. But for now, “I'm doing this on my own,” Biever said.
“I really hope it takes off and I hope people pay attention to them. If we save one turtle or one bird, it's worth it. I love animals and I think we need to do more for our planet.”