Bon jour luc,
In my posting on a bridge strategy, I specifically named "MSW" (municipal solid waste) as the subject. In the EPA definition, MSW does not include industrial or C&D or a lot of other waste streams that do need to be addressed. But part of our bridge strategy has to be that we are focused on a specific waste stream, and MSW is the one that that the landfills/incinerators live and die for. In Colorado, we have separately regulated industrial and C&D waste streams, so they will need their own bridge strategies.
As for the consumer element, you are spot on because the "source separated universe" doesn't work without their buy-in. Converting the general public away from the single trash can and into the world of separated waste (hate to call it waste, but that is what the masses know it as), whether its a 2,3 or 4 sort system, is really the big challenge. I can't say that strongly enough ... moving the public into a separated waste future is the real battle, and most elected officials and public works directors don't want to even go there... thus the single trash can world and bury/burn "solutions" gain an advantage from the start. I don't have a "simple" approach to public behavior change, even though I've been at it for 25 years!! But part of the story, and a strong part, is your point about "ecological products" and the power of shifting consumer and government spending. So, I advise communities that to make the ZW Park work, I also advise that they budget at least $3/per capita/year for a "culture shift and education program" that once established will not be going away for at least a generation or two. This number is not based on any science, just experience.
From: "Table Concertation Agro Alimentaire" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent 1/24/2008 3:14:05 PM
To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, GreenYes@no.address, firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Re: [GAIA Zero Waste] RE: [ZWIA] Re: LA Zero Waste pans
I like things resume simply. Eric made a good job
on that. Merci.
Household residual matters are one part of waste
production. Industrial and construction are the other parts. Are they included
in your reflection?
I agree that resource recovery is on the
way. By example, Biochemistry (l am not talking of GMO) is bringing lot of
new matters that will change the datas. Communities and business investing in
incinerator made wrong choices. Soon or later, they will loose their fuel..
Since there, I agree with you.
What I do not understand, is when you
are talking to compost or digest the remaining 30%. In my head, if you divert
70%, that include main part of organic part. Right? If yes, can you really
manage it the way you are suggesting? I see in that 30%, all king of dirty
matters, organic and non organic, not easy to deal with and dispose after.
Right? Finally I think technical ways working on disposal is not
Maybe solution should count on 3 parts:
Consumers, industries, governments.
If we inform consumers on the impact of bad
(nonecological)products, they will able to make good choices. From that,
industries will change their products to save their markets. For sure, if Govnmt
are enough willing to tax nonecological products and support good one, that
will accelerate the process.
If not with Govnmt, how do we start the
Look at organic or sustenable forestry
certification products. It's amazing how they are bringing changes. Can we
think of something similar for industrial processes vs packaging or internal
disposal or their residus??
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, January 24, 2008 3:36
Subject: [GAIA Zero Waste] RE: [ZWIA] Re:
LA Zero Waste pans
Helen is right, and I
just got an email from Scotland that their ZW
Scotland will include 25% efw.
I suggest we come up
with a position on how to build the bridge to a ZW Future. Since 90%+
resource recovery isnt going to happen immediately, we need to advocate for a
positive solution to the remaining mixed waste fraction. They
out there are saying its a waste to NOT make energy out of it
todays world that is a very compelling and logical position. If we
dont like that, than what is our alternative?
Let me share what
Ive been saying to counter the efw proponents
(just did it this morning)
and I know this isnt the preferred future we are all working for, but I do
present it as a bridge strategy:
- Source separated
community MSW is the cleanest and cheapest way to manage 70% of the
communitys discards, and this has been proven in numerous
- The remaining 30%
of mixed waste will be gradually phased down to only 10% over about a ten
year period (in truth no one has done this yet so we dont know how long it
will take), and while were getting there we will process the material at
the landfill either through (1) an energy-producing anaerobic digestion
system and then using the stabilized digestate as daily cover (this approach
is for big cities that can afford it); or (2) a simple windrow composting
system that will stabilize the biowaste fraction of the mixed waste, and
then again use as daily cover. After ten years, there will no
more than 10% mixed waste, maybe even zero (but I doubt it), and it will
continue to be processed and stabilized.
- This approach will
triple or more the life of the existing landfill infrastructure in
America, and its possible
that no new landfills or incinerators need be built for the next 100 years,
Since there is a
flood of new incinerator and bioreactor proposals popping up all around us,
I suggest that the above argument combined with a moratorium for five years on
new incinerators and landfills is a winner. We need to argue that there
is no sense in moving forward with the multi-million dollar facilities to bury
and burn our resources until after a serious pursuit of 70% has been
is this argument weak? My goal is to stop the flow of investments into
the new bury/burn facilities, so what else can we do to accomplish
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Boulder, CO. 80301
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On Behalf Of Helen
Sent: Thursday, January 24, 2008 10:24
Subject: [ZWIA] Re: LA Zero Waste
There is a dragon coiled in these
Our metro politicians made a momentous decision this week
to cancel a huge landfill project. The political buy-in was achieved through
the promise that we can build a suite of 3 - 6 waste-to-energy plants here in
the region to manage "what cannot be further recycled or composted..." Our
regional staff have even hijacked the "Zero Waste Challenge" issued by our
politicians and are saying that WTE is a component of ZW.
our region are getting organized to challenge this. We all know that an
incinerator ~ or any facility that turns waste to any kind of "fuel" ~ is a tapeworm that will suck
more and more resources that are needed to build a healthy economy (or needed
to stay right where they are in nature...)
Activities that facilitate
the transformation of material to energy is what is driving climate
Please assure me and the citizens of LA that your Zero Waste
plan doesn't have a waste-to-"fuel" provision.
AM 1/24/2008, email@example.com wrote:
Whatever cannot be further
recycled or composted from the department's 750,000 weekly customers could be
fuels, such as biodiesel or electricity
to power our grid, said Alex Helou, assistant director for the city's Bureau
"Instead of just burying it in the ground and creating
greenhouse gases, we could use it as a resource to recycle, reuse and convert
into a resource that could create clean energy," said Helou.
early to say how much money the city could make from these alternative fuels,
but there is definite potential to generate revenue, Pereira
Already Long Beach converts garbage into electricity for its
residents. And it uses about 100 tons of trash from Los Angeles a day to do it
and also charges $42.50 a ton to take our garbage, said Helou.
using Los Angeles garbage to create energy for our city, we can also reduce
our costs instead of subsidizing Long Beach, Helou said.
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