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[GreenYes] Our pal Bloomberg slashes recycling
Yup, it's true.  As a cost-cutting feature, Bloomberg proposes to relieve 
New York City Dept Of Sanitation of collecting all glass, metal and 
plastic.  Nifty, eh?  Just think.  If our pal Giuliani had just instituted 
the cost-saving waste prevention measures we'd asked for years ago, they 
would have been rolling in millions of dollars in savings now, they 
wouldn't have had to make any cuts in DOS expenditures.  (These cuts are 
being made because NYC has lost $4-5 BILLION in tax revenues thanks to 9/11 
-- all who think that NYC even got the $20 billion we were promised by Bush 
should think again -- and that figure doesn't include money for cleaning 
apartments of asbestos much less replacing these huge losses to the economy.)

So now the City compounds its problems by adding to export (now, not just 
more than half of these recyclables will be exported and burned or 
landfilled, but now All of them will be.  Our export rate will go upwards 
towards 90%.  I'll bet the incinerators will choke on all the extra metal 
and glass) -- won't Newark be pleased.  The incinerators were not designed 
for the combination of "garbage" they are in for.  I'll bet they haven't 
even thought about implications (other than economic) of this plan -- so 
what else is new?

If we can get New York City's Independent Budget Office to expedite a study 
on costs of recycling vs costs of export, that's our best weapon.  At last 
week's hearing, the solid waste person at IBO repeated what  we had been 
told before... that the cost of recycling is getting to be or already the 
same as export (since export costs are rising and recycling costs are 

If the City Council really wants to support recycling, not to mention 
prevention, this will turn into one of the first big battles of the new 

I hope we can find the audiotapes for the radio campaign to save the 
recycling program made of Stiller and Meara in 1991 when Dinkins was 
planning to KILL the recycling program outright.  We can sure use them now.

Maggie Clarke, Ph.D.
Environmental Scientist and Educator
New York City 
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