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RE: [greenyes] landfill bans

Good points! At our facility, we provide preferable rates for
greenwaste, wood waste, inerts, etc. to encourage recycling (from 50 to
300% discount in the tipping fee). I agree wholeheartedly with the
issues you raise, since my job is to teach the public about recycling
and keeping these materials OUT of the landfill. However, I see two
large challenges that you don't mention...first, we don't screen or sort
through the waste that comes to our landfill. All those cans and bottles
will be buried without anyone looking for them. We don't feel that
sorting garbage is a job we want anyone to do (and we do lots of sorting
at our dirty MRF, including hands on). Second, what would be the
ultimate public education program to teach people to recycle every
bottle and can? We do a lot but obviously more can be achieved. The
numbers you cite are alarming and would probably hold true for most
other landfills as well.

I think the follow-up discussion should focus on what we can do to
address these issues.

Heidi Feldman, Public Education Coordinator

Monterey Regional Waste Management District

From: Helen Spiegelman [mailto:hspie@no.address]
Sent: Wednesday, March 02, 2005 7:12 AM
To: greenyes
Subject: RE: [greenyes] landfill bans

I think it would be well-advised for SWANA -- and especially for the
elected officials who oversee municipal waste management in their
communities -- to consider the original purpose of municipal solid waste
management: to protect the public health by ensuring that the streets
were cleared of garbage.

MSWM began as a policing authority, but it quickly became a public
service that put private waste companies out of business (see Susan
Strasser, Waste and Want: a social history...).

My local waste authority found in its 2001 waste composition audit that
an estimated 33 million refundable aluminum cans went to our 2 publicly
owned landfills and WTE facility in that year (at considerable profit to
our local government, which sits on a huge capital reserve made up of
surplus revenues from tipping fees). These aluminum cans have a
redemption value of over $2 million -- in one year, from one
metropolitan area with a population of 1.5 million. In addition, who
knows how many wine and liquor bottles, juice containers, water bottles,
and other refundable containers that have lower redemption rates were
hauled away with the trash? (all beverages except milk are included in
our deposit system)

I did a quick analysis of the waste audit and estimated that two-thirds
of the material disposed in our region was either easily recyclable
products (ones under deposit or included in municipal programs) or
easily compostable organics. Some of these materials are banned from
disposal, but the bans are not being enforced. Others should be banned
but are not (e.g. yard waste, which is collected in all communities but
not banned from disposal).

I showed this information to our elected officials and recommended that
local waste authorities dedicate resources in two key areas:

- shut the gate: enforce disposal bans on products and materials that
have recycling/composting programs available -- especially EPR programs.
Bans are a key part of local government's policing function and should
be resourced adequately.

- step up to the plate: don't allow our community's compostable organics
to go to landfills where they contribute to global warming. This should
be where SWANA engineers apply their considerable expertise: providing
efficient, effective programs to manage this threat to public health and
safety. Organics are the fraction of MSW that is "produced" by the
community and the community should take responsibility for it, just as
we insist the producers of soft drinks and electronics should take
responsibility for their products.


At 12:33 PM 3/1/2005, Heidi Feldman wrote:

SWANA has a motto..."No ban without a plan." Often there is no mechanism
in place to deal with the results of a ban. Our agency (landfill and
recycling programs) is charged with carrying out a lot of the programs
initiated by the state (and mostly we welcome that California has been
the leader in these issues). Many times we have to scramble to meet the
public demands after the state says "no" to a material in the landfill.
Heidi Feldman, Public Educ.
Monterey Regional Waste Mgt. District

From: Amy Bauman [mailto:abauman@no.address]
Sent: Tuesday, March 01, 2005 12:16 PM
To: 'Jenny Gitlitz'; 'greenyes'
Subject: RE: [greenyes] landfill bans

That's a great point, Jenny. Regulations cannot operate in isolation.
They need to be accompanied by enforcement budgets as well as
educational programming.

Likewise, banning materials before there are markets for them is
fruitless. This is beyond the original question, of course, but I'd
like to say that in the case of Massachusetts, I was extremely impressed
with the way in which the state called on a diverse group of interests
over the course of two years for input into the pending ban of certain
types of building materials from landfills. It was a collaboration
among different departments within the DEP, haulers, transfer stations,
consultants like myself, contractors,and architects.

In the end, DEP held off banning certain materials (like carpet, asphalt
shingles, and wallboard) that were deemed to have insufficient markets
to take up the slack. We continue to work as a team to explore markets
so that one day they can be added to the list. In the mean time, it's
up to people like me to find ways to divert materials back to industries
that see the value in accepting post-consumer material in as feedstock.

Amy B.
-----Original Message-----
From: Jenny Gitlitz [mailto:jenny.gitlitz@no.address]
Sent: Tuesday, March 01, 2005 2:58 PM
To: abauman@no.address; greenyes
Subject: Re: [greenyes] landfill bans

Without state and local enforcement, landfill bans are inadequate. Here
in Dalton, MA, for example, the town does not enforce its own regs
requiring pvt haulers to provide recycling; much recyclable material
ends up landfilled. Some of us are working to change this, but there's
always local politics... Landfill bans were originally a back-door way
of requiring local recycling--without being perceived as unfunded
mandates. But since the enforcement is also largely unfunded, the onus
remains on local government to act or not act when haulers violate the


Jennifer Gitlitz

Research Director, Container Recycling Institute

Home Office:

2 Pomeroy Ave.

Dalton, MA 01226

Tel. (413) 684-4746

Mobile: (413) 822-0115

Fax: (413) 403-0233

Email: jgitlitz@no.address

Please note the new address for CRI's main office:

Container Recycling Institute

1601 North Kent St., Suite 803

Arlington, VA 22209-2105

Tel. (703) 276-9800

Fax: (703) 276-9587 <> <>

On 3/1/05 1:58 PM, Amy Bauman at abauman@no.address wrote:

Hi Dan -

Massachusett's DEP's language on bans begins on page four of the
document linked below


Amy Bauman

Director of Business Development



617-504-2095 (mobile) <>

-----Original Message-----

From: Dan De Grassi [mailto:dpw180@no.address]

Sent: Tuesday, March 01, 2005 1:08 PM

To: greenyes@no.address

Subject: [greenyes] landfill bans

Good morning. I'm looking for links to examples of local government
ordinances banning recyclables, etc. from landill disposal. Any

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