Last year's recycler of the year, four-year-old Mason Parkhill, has inspired the recycling society to look for more young environmentalists.
Last year, Mason wanted to have his fourth birthday party at the recycling depot on River Road, and he came with his sister and friends for a tour of the facility.
Mason had set up a complete recycling system at home and sent a letter to mayor and council to let them know recyclables were being placed in public garbage bins.
That got the folks at the recycling society thinking about highlighting up-and-coming leaders of the environmental movement.
"We kind of saw the effect [the attention] had on [Mason] as well," said Leanne Koehn, Ridge Meadows Recycling Society's spokesperson. "There are so many youth that are... making a difference."
There are a lot of "people who are having fun with saving the world," Koehn said - it's not all "gloom and doom."
The recycling society launched its 40 Under 40 campaign asking residents of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows to nominate young people who are making a difference in the environmental movement.
This might be someone who has started a recycling program in their workplace or school, or someone who is making an effort to raise awareness about the environment.
Those chosen as the 40 under 40 will be featured in The TIMES during Waste Reduction Week in October and will be honoured with a presentation to Maple Ridge mayor and council. They will also take a tour of the recycling depot in Maple Ridge, and be listed in the Ridge Meadows Recycling 40 Under 40 Online Hall of Fame.
They'll also be asked to help name the new Rainbow of Recyclers - characters developed by the recycling society for its educational work.
Nomination deadline is midnight on Sunday, Sept. 30. Nominees must be 39 years or younger as of Dec. 31, 2012 and be a resident of either Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows, or Katzie. Categories are "child," age 12 and younger; "youth," ages 13 to 19; and "adult," age 20 and older. Minors must have their parent or guardian's consent.
Nomination forms are available online, at the Ridge Meadows Recycling Society's depot in Albion, and The TIMES, #2-22345 North Ave., and completed forms can be dropped off at either the recycling depot or at The TIMES office before the Sept. 30 deadline.