More Government Involvement? Alameda County on the Fence…by Rebecca Mayer

Here’s an idea: make recycling mandatory.  Impose fines for violators who throw away recyclable or compostable items.

Several areas throughout the United States have set a precedent:

Alameda County, California, is now considering mandating recycling and composting in order to divert 90% of eligible materials from city dumps by 2020.

Although it seems many Californians approve diversion of waste from the state’s landfills, there are opponents to the plan.  Local businesses worry about additional costs – more trucks to divert recycling and composting items, as well as fuel costs.  The environmental footprint seems to even out in this proposal, due to the necessity of hauling more items farther distances.

The San Jose Mercury News mentions the concerns of The California Refuse Recycling Council, a trade association of haulers, processors, recyclers and composters, who warned that the emissions from additional composting would be a financial burden on the operators, who might have to invest in technology and purchase emission offsets.

Interested in more reading on the subject:

  • Here’s a controversial article called “Recycling Is Garbage,” written in 1996 by contrarian John Tierney in the New York Times Magazine.
  • Here’s a response to “Recycling is Garbage,” found on The Straight Dope.

We are interested to hear your thoughts.  What do you think about government involvement in recycling and composting programs?

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About bagitmovie

Bag It is a documentary film following the world wide use of plastic bags, plastic's impact on the environment and human health.
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One Response to More Government Involvement? Alameda County on the Fence…by Rebecca Mayer

  1. Dano says:

    Who cares about their woes, they should have seen it coming and already invested in the machinery and technology to handle the situation

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