Tuesday, August 21, 2007

2.00 to recycle or 2.00 not to recycle

It look like curbside recycling is poised to return to unincorporated JP and Jean Lafitte. I was never a big fan of it in the past. For me the biggest deterrent was that I had to separate the different types of recyclables. I know, talk about hardships, right? The result was that my bin was filled with only paper. I had to pick one because I was too lazy to separate, and paper was it.

The good news is that the committee researching this has recommended that the winning bidder bear the burden of separating the materials. Yard waste will also be collected, although how they recycle yard waste is a mystery to me. Tree branches I can see, but grass clippings?????? * Looks like they plan to compost the clippings for you. Here is a link to a pdf for the city of San Diego recycling program. They also recommend the collection of 5 types of plastics instead of the old 2. The last change is that they recommend that glass be no longer picked up. They cite high cost due to weight and the lack of demand for used glass. I guess its cheaper to just get sand than recycle glass.

It sounds like some changes for the better, if they adhere to the recommendations. Residents were paying $1.87 before the storm and that price must not change dramatically. I think having the contractor separate the waste is worth any increased cost because I think more people will use the service. But if the collection of yard waste pushes the cost upwards of $5.00, then I think that part will be ditched.

I could take this or leave it. I'm not just that worried about it. While I have fluorescent lights in my house and I compost yard waste, I do that because I am cheap. I do it to save $$ on electricity and on buying trash bags, not for the environment. I also drastically reduced my "carbon footprint" when my A/C was out for 4 days last week.

I think that environmentalists could get people to do more eco-friendly things if they touted the ones that will save money. As an example, have you seen the price of "organic" milk. I would never spend that much on a gallon of milk. People are motivated by their self interests and environmentalists must appeal to that if they want to make progress.

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