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[GreenYes] RELEASE: Coalition Opposes WMI's Attempt to Repeal Illinois Yard Trimmings Ban
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Peter Anderson  608-231-1100

ENVIRONMENTALISTS OPPOSE WASTE MANAGEMENT INC. 
ATTEMPT TO REPEAL KEY RECYCLING LAW IN ILLINOIS

PEORIA, Ill.   Eleven leading national, state 
and local recycling and environmental 
organizations today opposed a proposal by Waste 
Management Inc. that is before the Peoria 
County Board tonight.  

"The Coalition to Oppose Attacks on Recycling 
in America is countering the waste company's 
attempt to amend the current Illinois law 
banning the disposal of yard trimmings so that 
the trash company can increase the volume of 
organic matter going to the Peoria landfill," 
said Friends of the Earth's Erich Pica.

Such a reversal would "undermine one of the 
most important elements of America's recycling 
efforts," according to Allen Hershkowitz of the 
Natural Resources Defense Council. 

"The proposal has the appearance of being an 
opening thrust for a frontal assault on one of 
the more successful pillars of America's 
recycling policy," according to Bill Sheehan of 
the Grassroots Recycling Network, which 
organized the coalition. "Illinois' yard waste 
ban has been a huge success in reducing the 
need for additional landfills and promoting 
successful composting of yard trimmings," 
according to Jack Darin, director of the Sierra 
Club's Illinois Chapter

"Bans on disposal of yard trimmings in 
landfills have made it possible to essentially 
double the overall diversion rate and are 
absolutely vital to achieving America's 
recycling goals, which is why 21 other states 
have also enacted laws banning disposal of yard 
trimmings," noted Neil Seldman from the 
Institute for Local Self-Reliance. "Repealing 
those bans would undermine the American 
composting industry," said Jim McNelly from the 
U.S. Composting Council.  

For all of those reasons, the Coalition 
believes that the proposal would dramatically 
undermine the Nation's recycling and composting 
efforts, and be a threat to the environment, 
concluded Eric Lombardi from Eco-Cycle, Michael 
Garfield from Ecology Center and Susan Hubbard 
from the St. Paul Neighborhood Center, who run 
the nation's leading non-profit recycling 
operations.

In a letter to the Peoria County Board, which 
is considering WMI's request on December 13th, 
the organizations urged the Board to reject the 
proposal, reported Luan Railsback and David 
Pittman, representatives of the local groups, 
Peoria Environmental Action and the Peoria Area 
Green Party.

A technical discussion of the issue is posted 
at www.grrn.org/landfill/yardtrimmings/   

For more information from the participating 
organizations, contact:

NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
Coalition Coordinator, Peter Anderson  
    608-231-1100  anderson@recycleworlds.org 
Grassroots Recycling Network, Athens GA 
    (Bill Sheehan, 706-613-7121)
Friends of the Earth 
    (Erich Pica, 202-783-7400 ext. 229)
Sierra Club Illinois Chapter  
    (Jack Darin, 312-251-1680)
Institute for Local Self-Reliance 
    (Neil Seldman, 202-232-4108)
Natural Resources Defense Council  
    (Allen Hershkowitz,  212-727-4455)
U.S. Composting Council  
    (Jim McNelly, 320-492-5076)

LOCAL ORGANIZATIONS
Peoria Area Green Party, Peoria IL  
    (David Pittman, 309-673-6438)
Peoria Environmental Action  
    (Luan Railsback, 309-685-2866)
Eco-Cycle, Boulder CO 
    (Eric Lombardi, 303-444-6634)
Ecology Center, Ann Arbor MI  
    (Michael Garfield, 734-761-3599)
St. Paul Neighborhood Coalition, MN  
    (Susan Hubbard, 651-221-4462)

###


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