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Be the Change that we Seek...If the People will Lead, the Leaders must
Follow...NYC's ZW 2005 in Review
NYC's Zero Waste 2005 in Review with BIG UP!'s (recognition) for some
of the highlights over the year (feel free to forward) -
First the Action Item - I'd like to encourage all of you to please
contact your local Councilmember's office (contact info. available at:
handwritten letter/phone and/or email to demand that they support Zero
Waste goals, planning and funding in the yet to be approved Solid Waste
Management Plan (SWMP). Our new City Council Speaker (to be elected at
the January 4th stated mtg of the Council) will be able to champion our
cause or threaten our City's future based upon what they are willing to
demand in the SWMP. For more information, please skim through or read
the NYC Zero Waste Campaign's model plan Reaching for Zero at:
www.consumersunion.org/other/zero-waste/ where ideas may be copied and
pasted into your documents or a full pdf version may be downloaded for
Around this time of year/the end of this calender year (depending upon
which calender you use - in this case the NYC political calender year),
I'd like to send a few praises to some of the organizations that have
been truly Reaching for Zero in 2005 and recognize that we can Reach
even further in 2006 if we continue to struggle for Justice and Peace
in our work (apologies to any highlights that I may fail to mention -
I'm going to keep this NYC-centric).
BIG UP! to the NYC Waste Prevention Coalition www.whywastenyc.org and
the McSWAB's Waste Prevention Committee for spearheading the successful
passage of bills by the City Council on Dec. 21st including:
Int. 544-A: Reduces the purchase of products containing hazardous
substances. This includes products such as PVC that lead to the
formation of dioxins, mercury-added lamps, toxic flame retardants,
mercury, and other toxic materials in electronics.
Int. 534-A: Creates an office of environmental purchasing to develop
and implement environmental purchasing standards to reduce the purchase
of persistent bioaccumulative and toxic (PBT) chemicals, improve indoor
air quality, decrease greenhouse gas emissions, etc.
Int. 536-A: Purchases more energy efficient products such as computers
Int. 545-A: Increases the purchase of products with recycled content.
Int. 552-A: Reduces the purchase of toxic cleaning and other custodial
products to protect workers.
Thanks also to Center for Health, Environment and Justice who joined
the effort late to particularly address PVC (a/k/a Plastic #3 the
greatest scourge of the plastics sector).
BIG UP! to the Green Workers Cooperative www.greenworker.coop and
Sustainable South Bronx www.ssbx.org for securing federal funding to
plan for a Resource Recovery Park in the the Boogie Down Bronx's Hunts
Point neighborhood where waste transfer stations have been the practice
and resource recovery will be the future - the vision and outright
demand for Environmental Justice by these organizations has been a
powerful force for change that has rocked the way politicians in the
Bronx speak to environmental issues and leaders are being recognized
for the "genius" of promoting sustainable alternatives to the
degradation practices that have been a way of life for too long.
BIG UP! to the Bigger Better Bottle Bill Coalition and NYPIRG who
staffed it, for the momentous push for statewide legislation to win a
landslide victory vote this past June, 98-40 in the NYS Assembly in
support of the the Bigger Better Bottle Bill
(A2517B-DiNapoli/S1290B-LaValle) - demands for a vote in the NYS Senate
must be increasingly pressure the State Senators including Senator
Golden here in NYC, the only majority party member in the NYC
delegation not currently co-sponsoring the legislation in the State
Thanks also the to the Container Recycling Institute for their ongoing
support in this effort.
BIG UP! to the NYC Department of Sanitiation's Bereau of Waste
Prevention, Reuse and Recycling whose Comprehensive Waste
Characterization Study of
'04-'05 was larger than any other ever produced and promises to provide
a plethora of statistical data for advocates to utilize in the struggle
for Zero Waste.
BIG UP! to the NYC Zero Waste Campaign
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ZeroWasteCampaignNYC/ and the GrassRoots
Recycling Network www.grrn.org for hosting the most kick-ass ZW
conference http://www.grrn.org/conference2005/index.html - the 2nd
National Zero Waste Action Conference ever held in entire country this
past May at Pace University's Downtown Campus.
BIG UP! to the Lower Eastside Ecology Center www.lesecologycenter.org
for teaming up with NYC to collect more e-waste than any other single
organization in NYC by holding events in all 5 boroughs including a
Staten Island event that involved an estimated 1% of all households in
the borough - an unprecedented achievement in the annals of non-profit
recovery in a major city.
BIG UP! to the Natural Resource Defense Council for spearheading
groundbreaking legislation for Extended Producer Responsibility of
E-Waste in NYC known as
(and hosting NYC Zero Waste Campaign meetings from their inception
through August '05 - thanks to Environmental Defense for picking up the
hosting duties where NRDC left off because of rehab construction at
their offices) and thanks also to the Product Policy Institute
www.productpolicy.org for being a tireless supporter of this concept.
BIG UP! to the Community Environmental Center and their Build It Green!
NYC www.bignyc.org building materials reuse store which opened in
February '05 and has since partnered with Habitat for Humanity's
BIG UP! to the Sierra Club - NYC Group - whose participation in the
NYC Zero Waste Campaign since its inception led to its holistic
adoption of Zero Waste as a 20-year goal in NYC and publication of the
NYC Zero Waste Campaign's Mayoral Candidates Survey
on Zero Waste was published in their fall edition of the City Sierran
mailed to over 15,000 members in August '05 and recently elected
Shannon H. Stone, their Zero Waste Project Co-Chair to their Executive
Committee based upon the entirety of her work for a sustainable society
including Zero Waste; Atlantic Chapter - whose Waste Committee Chair,
Chris Burger (an upstate Republican) has demonstrated through personal
commitment to Zero Waste that excepting failed marketplace options,
Zero Waste is achievable (he and his wife generate 1.5 pounds of
unrecovered resources annually compared to the NYS per capita average
approaching 5 pounds/day); and National - whose EJ Principles include
"We support an end to pollution -The long-range policy goal priorities
for environmental protection must be: (1) to end the production of
polluting substances and waste through elimination, replacement,
redesign, reduction, and reuse (zero waste)" and recognized my
organizing work on behalf of the NYC Zero Waste Campaign with their
2005 Environmental Alliances Award for building a diverse campaign in
support of a healthier planet.
BIG UP! to Freecycle New York City
firstname.lastname@example.org to which all the locals
should utilize and publicize the link is for subscribing (I advise
choosing digest format), this listsevre services over 19.5 thousand
people in NYC (making this one of the biggest if not the biggest free
barter system in any City) who freely give and take supporting Reuse
and keeping items away from Burn & Bury disposal. Similar listserves
are readily found with a simple google search and can be started up
with little cost besides time and effort on the part of their
moderators. Because of their internal rules their listserve cannot be
copied on this message, but their moderators will be copied.
BIG UP! to Recycle This!
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/KeepNYCRecycling/ for their listserve and
posts like the reprint below that highlight the opportunities for Waste
Prevention and Reuse, (special thanks to the NYC Waste Prevention
Coalition and Reuse Alliance for spearheading these ideas in NYC over a
number of years now) the top of the resource recovery hierarchy a/k/a
the Zero Waste framing of our waste issues - all of these ideas should
be adapted into our everyday lives as we plan meetings/gatherings and
events - it's time we put theory into practice and demand a transition
toward a Zero Waste society - Be the Change that we Seek...
Timothy J.W. Logan
Lead Organizer, NYC Zero Waste Campaign
P.S. All of you inspire me (or hopefully are inspired by me if you
aren't yet converted away from burn and bury disposal technologies) -
may your passions in the Zero Waste arena never wain and your works
forever inspire the rest of the planet.
"Today everything is so copacetic
Tomorrow you sad and blue
Tell me what does it profit people
To speak of and not do"
-excerpted from New Time & Age by - Ziggy and
Date: Fri, 30 Dec 2005 23:13:35 -0500
Subject: Kleenex Boycott
From: Aaron <email@example.com>
Tissues used in place of "snot rags" account, I'm sure, for an
infinitesimal portion of all the wasteful destruction of trees that
goes on in the world. While the problem of environmental destruction is
mainly a political problem, There are so many things people could do,
aside even from making a revolution, to reduce their own contribution
to the destruction of trees for paper, etc., that would mean a lot more
than not using tissues. A couple of suggestions:
1) Don't buy newspapers containing lots of advertising, or pick up
unused copies of free ones, unless there's something you really need to
read in that paper that's not available online.
2) When you're finished with a newspaper, a section of a paper, or some
other reading matter, whether you got it new or second-hand, leave it
where someone else can pick it up. (OTOH, free copies of reactionary
papers like Epoch Times should go straight to the recycling bin. Some
considerations outweigh saving paper!)
3) Carry re-useable chopsticks with you when you might be eating out at
a place that uses the disposable kind. Lots of rainforest is destroyed
to make the latter.
I don't believe, however, that individual choice is the primary way to
stop environmental destruction. Unless you include in "individual
choice" the decision as to which capitalist predator to assassinate.
Date: Sat, 31 Dec 2005 06:16:20 -0500
From: Cathryn Swan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Kleenex Boycott
We want to put the Kleenex information and perhaps other 'tips' on the
Recycle This! web site also when we 'revamp' it.
Thanks for sending.
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