GreenYes Digest V96 #37

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GreenYes Digest Mon, 2 Dec 96 Volume 96 : Issue 37

Today's Topics:
Recycling is Garbage

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Problems you can't solve otherwise to

Date: Sun, 1 Dec 1996 12:59:15, -0500
Subject: Recycling is Garbage

I am forwarding this message sent to me by my New York Times

-Dave Reynolds

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From: Jim Scanlon
Subject: Recycling is Garbage
Date: 11/30
Time: 09:14 PM

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From: Jim Scanlon <>
Subject: Recycling is Garbage

Hi Dave:

You asked for it. Here's another post on the subject.

Regards, Jim Scanlon

Recycling Is Garbage

Readers who have followed this thread know that earlier this year,
New York
City's Mayor Rudolph Giuliani withheld $25 million from the City's
recycling program and ridiculed it as unrealistic, and as a kind of
religion. He echoed arguments made a few days before in a
controversial New
York Times Magazine article (Recycling Is Garbage) by John Tierney.

It would now appear that the Mayor has had a religious conversion of
According to the N.Y. Times (November 30,1996) the Mayor and
Pataki jointly released a report which calls for increasing funding
recycling---even including junk mail and milk cartons--- throughout
city, in addition to restoring the funds cut earlier.

The plan initially calls for expanding the export of the city's
trash to sites outside the state. The Times report states, "The city
start looking for landfills or incinerators interested in taking the
garbage next month".

The Times, goes on to say, "But the plan faces considerable
obstacles: the
most daunting is finding a place that will accept New York City's

[One does not have to be a New York cynic to suspect that this plan
being defined in a way that will insure failure]

New York City is facing a garbage crisis. It collects 14,000 metric
tons of
garbage daily and after recycling 1,000 tons, all of the remainder
barged to the Fresh Kills Dump. In 1993, the Mayor and the Governor
promised to close the dump by 2002, this being an important issue
everyone, including Republicans on Staten Island where the biggest
dump in
the history of the world is located. Where will the city put is
refuse if
the dump closes.

Both the Mayor and the Governor will soon be up for reelection and
other communities and states balk at taking N.Y.City's collectable
they cannot be accused of not trying. They might even benefit from
City's masochistic psychology which was acutely evident when Gerald
denied the City's request for financial aid during the last fiscal
viz the famous headline "Ford to City: Drop Dead"

N.Y. City (not including the Metropolitan Area) produces 26,000
metric tons
of collectable waste daily, with 12,000 being disposed of by the
sector and the 14,000 remaining being a collective, socialized
responsibility. In 1986, 21,200 metric tons were dumped in the dump.
Times article quotes a member of the Task Force which produced the
stating that the city would have to increase its recycling rate from
(sic) to 35 to 40% by 2001. It seems that this percentage is of the
socialized total, not the actual total amount of collectable garbage.

No one knows what effect the dump has had, and will continue to have,
human health, to consider only one environmental aspect. It is an
source of barely concealed concern of all residents of Staten Island.
are many sinister anecdotal stories of illness among children and
some of
them may actually be true.Staten Island, like nearby eastern New
Jersey has
a very high death rate from cancers. Although New Jersey is very
close to
the dump, the prevailing winds waft New Jersey's uncollected garbage
over Staten Island where they combine with the smell of the dump
which is
the most obvious reminder of it's existence. Although millions of
of "leachate" run off into New Jersey waters, this contamination is
immediately obvious except when it includes hypodermic needles.

No one knows how many "Love Canals" are buried in the dump. Over the
there have been scandals involving payoffs made by private collectors
clandestinely dump hazardous materials including body parts,
hospital waste and toxic chemicals. Recently areas of slipage have
developed in the garnage mountain causing landslide concerns.

Tours of the Landfill are available for students and solid waste
professionals offering "a great opportunity to see a large-scale
waste operation."

Call landfill tours, 212-766-3917

Jim Scanlon

Jim Scanlon
199 Canal St #8
San Rafael CA 94901
Fax -Manual

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End of GreenYes Digest V96 #37