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Re: [GreenYes] Re: Single Stream Processing - Pro and Con
(Note to GreenYesers: in order to keep this email reasonable in length -
please refer to previous communications on this topic under the discussion
thread labeled "Re: 2002 Recycling Today Paper Recycling Conference Report")

Dear Helen:

I must confess that I did not understand your message.  If I wanted to
realize the additional value of my recyclables by sorting them, there is
nothing stopping me from then selling them to a buy-back operation.  Are you
suggesting that there should be multiple recycling collection systems
serving the same community serving different constituencies that are
differentiated by willingness to sort?

Sincerely,

Roger M. Guttentag
610-584-8836
rgutten@concentric.net

----- Original Message -----
From: Helen Spiegelman <hspie@telus.net>
To: <greenyes@grrn.org>
Sent: Thursday, April 25, 2002 11:59 AM
Subject: Re: [GreenYes] Re: 2002 Recycling Today Paper Recycling Conference
Report


> Michele,
>
> As a fellow free-enterpriser, I have to challenge you on your analysis of
> the issue of fibre sorting!
>
> You suggest that it is a *social* issue whether fibre products should be
> sorted  ("not possible to educate all consumers", "OK for middleclass
> suburban neighbourhoods" etc.). While this observation scratches the
truth,
> it falls short of proposing a solution.
>
> Sure some people's time is too valuable to waste it sorting their garbage
> -- those people should be expected to pay a price for having someone else
> do it. That's not what happens in our municipal recycling systems.
>
> If we design inflexible collection systems that do not allow some
motivated
> consumers to reap economic benefits by adding value to their discards by
> sorting them, then we miss an opportunity to make recycling more
efficient.
> This is not a question of 'education' it is a question of economics.
>
> IMHO, the last thing the city should do is provide free collection of
> unsorted fibres. This distorts the market by rewarding those who don't
take
> the trouble to sort. It diverts a huge volume of otherwise high-grade
fibre
> from the market. It shuts out those who would like to realize economic
> benefits by sorting their trash. It also perpetuates the crude 19th
century
> infrastructure of 'professional' trash sorters (what advanced professional
> training does it require to stand at a malodorous conveyor and pick news
> and OCC off a stream of MWP?)
>
> Until we free fibres from captivity in uneconomic monopolistic collection
> systems we will never reach zero waste.
>
> Just my opinion, of course! :)
>
> Helen.
>


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