Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Guest Seth

Cleveland: Compulsory recycling program

Recommended Posts

High-tech carts will tell on Cleveland residents who don't recycle ... and they face $100 fine

Published: Friday, August 20, 2010, 8:00 AM   

Updated: Friday, August 20, 2010, 8:09 AM

Mark Gillispie, The Plain Dealer 

 

...

The chips will allow city workers to monitor how often residents roll carts to the curb for collection. If a chip show a recyclable cart hasn't been brought to the curb in weeks, a trash supervisor will sort through the trash for recyclables.

 

Trash carts containing more than 10 percent recyclable material could lead to a $100 fine, according to Waste Collection Commissioner Ronnie Owens.

...

more: http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2010/08/city_of_cleveland_to_use_high-.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a no-brainer, and I'm fully in favor of it. Of course the comments section on cleveland.com is filled with the "it's MY choice to recycle or not!" (the same people who b!tch about any perceived wasteful spending) when recycling *saves* the city money versus having trash hauled away, and of course the inevitable "what about the poor seniors?!?"... because of course no exceptions will be made, and any senior citizen who doesn't recycle will be clubbed like a baby fur seal because that's all the city is hoping to accomplish with this. And let's not forget the people who think that all the money the city works with comes from one place and they're free to spend it wherever, whenever, on whatever :roll:

 

There's absolutely no excuse for not recycling the way this will be implemented - it's already been implemented in my area. The city provides the carts, you don't even need to separate recyclables (though they prefer you bag similar items together), and it saves the city money by reducing expenditures for trash hauling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

^ Agreed a thousand percent!

 

 

People who can/are totally able.....and  are not recycling as much as they can...are part of the problem why we have so much random crap laying all over the city, our highways, etc..etc.. Next time you take a drive along the highways, take note to the rubbish all over the sides, in  medians, etc.. And while much of this is from littering... a lot of this is also from trash cans not properly closed...and much of the rubbish would NOT even be IN the trashcan if it were recycled.

 

Anyway you look at it, this should help curb some of the random debris/litter/rubbish laying all over the place. This condition cannot...and should not be allowed to get any worse here, end of story. Those who have absolutely no clue as to what this is doing to us socially, economically, and environmentally...are the ones who spew such denial statements as Mayday was pointing out. Recycling needs to be mandatory...there is no more putting this off. The time is now because too many people refuse to learn while they have been given all the chances and opportunity to do so...so sorry, now laws need to be made.

 

Not recycling does nothing for this city's image. In fact, it makes us a joke in the eyes of the progressive communities that move forward with it and get it...as to why it makes sense.  They bask in the glow of national praise. In a city that has a notorious history of bad environmental stewardship, such a turnaround is welcomed. That is, unless you want our lakefront/city to look like a garbage dump and be embarrassed to show anyone around town. Nice to know the city can look as god in person as in pictures.

 

Its simply inexcusable to not recycle these days....This pitch out disposable bad habit needs to go by the wayside, or we will. I see people pitching crap on the ground all the time without a clue or care in the world and I am thinking... "WTF!!!???.. Is this back to 1970, or something?"

 

One place each and every school kid should see, is to go on a field trip to the landfills to see what actually happens to all the waste we generate. It does not simply "go away"... The sight is utterly shameful and pathetic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a no-brainer, and I'm fully in favor of it. Of course the comments section on cleveland.com is filled with the "it's MY choice to recycle or not!" (the same people who b!tch about any perceived wasteful spending) when recycling *saves* the city money versus having trash hauled away, and of course the inevitable "what about the poor seniors?!?"... because of course no exceptions will be made, and any senior citizen who doesn't recycle will be clubbed like a baby fur seal because that's all the city is hoping to accomplish with this. And let's not forget the people who think that all the money the city works with comes from one place and they're free to spend it wherever, whenever, on whatever :roll:

 

There's absolutely no excuse for not recycling the way this will be implemented - it's already been implemented in my area. The city provides the carts, you don't even need to separate recyclables (though they prefer you bag similar items together), and it saves the city money by reducing expenditures for trash hauling.

 

Will it really save money, though?

 

I think people just assume that recycling is a money-saver, but in reality, there is conflicting research about it.

 

http://www.allbusiness.com/finance/3584432-1.html

 

Either way, this microchip is nonsense.  I can't believe we're living in a day and age where a city government thinks it needs to be monitoring and digging through the trash of its residents.  How much is it going to cost to pay the salaries of these garbage-diggers?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Dayton has a similar program. I'll look into it.

Dayton does have recycling bins with microchips but residents will not be fined for not recycling.

 

Unfortunately, they were paid for by $500,000 in stimulus funds.

 

Microchips in bins will track recycling in Dayton

By Joanne Huist Smith, Staff Writer  Updated 1:17 PM Thursday, February 11, 2010

 

DAYTON — Starting this spring, Dayton residents will be encouraged to recycle more trash, and the city will distribute new jumbo bins embedded with microchips to track citizen participation.

 

“We’re doing this to save money,” said Fred Stovall, the city’s director of Public Works.

...

A $500,000 federal stimulus grant will pay for a consultant to design a campaign promoting recycling for Dayton, the purchase of 8,500, 96-gallon recycling containers and equipping trucks to read the microchips.

 

more: http://www.daytondailynews.com/news/dayton-news/microchips-in-bins-will-track-recycling-in-dayton-542478.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lorain County Solid Waste District participates in RecycleBank, which allows residents to earn points based on the weight of recycled materials collected from their residences.  Each residence has a green recycling cart which is weighed when collected, and credits are issued to the account holder.  Points can be redeemed for gift cards or merchandise from many national and local retailers.  In the classic "carrot vs. stick" analogy, it seems like we get the carrot while Cleveland is contemplating using the stick...

 

www.recyclebank.com/take_action/home_recycling

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a high tech version of what NY was doing years ago. Only difference was that instead of using microchips they either had the 'kick the bag to see if it clangs too much' method, or they made you buy clear plastic bags (depended on the town/city), so they could see the contents. In either case, if you were deemed a non-recycler, they just didn't take the trash. They left it there with a big yellow sticker on it pointing out your error. That's as big an incentive / penalty as the proposed fine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What about people who rent? As it generally goes now, trash pickup is paid for by the landlord... will the fines as well?

 

That's what the article said, if I remember correctly.  The landlords are responsible.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a high tech version of what NY was doing years ago. Only difference was that instead of using microchips they either had the 'kick the bag to see if it clangs too much' method, or they made you buy clear plastic bags (depended on the town/city), so they could see the contents. In either case, if you were deemed a non-recycler, they just didn't take the trash. They left it there with a big yellow sticker on it pointing out your error. That's as big an incentive / penalty as the proposed fine.

 

Great idea!  Taxpayers who are funding the waste department having services denied to them.  Is there a point upon which with trash piling up the city finally gives in?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a high tech version of what NY was doing years ago. Only difference was that instead of using microchips they either had the 'kick the bag to see if it clangs too much' method, or they made you buy clear plastic bags (depended on the town/city), so they could see the contents. In either case, if you were deemed a non-recycler, they just didn't take the trash. They left it there with a big yellow sticker on it pointing out your error. That's as big an incentive / penalty as the proposed fine.

 

Great idea! Taxpayers who are funding the waste department having services denied to them. Is there a point upon which with trash piling up the city finally gives in?

 

Admittedly this may not work everywhere. Given that I've only seen this system implemented in smaller towns in upstate NY, I don't know how successful it would be in a more densly urban environment. In the setting I saw it in, people didn't like trash piling up, so they adapted as necessary and began pulling out the recyclables so they could have the trash removed. This 'guilt based' system may not work as well where you have trash stored in an area away from your principal residence (back alley, or in a dumpster area, etc.) and/or you don't have a vested interest in ownership of the property, how it's maintained.

 

All I know is that everyone started recycling before too long, and it didn't entail significant fines on the residents to do it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a high tech version of what NY was doing years ago. Only difference was that instead of using microchips they either had the 'kick the bag to see if it clangs too much' method, or they made you buy clear plastic bags (depended on the town/city), so they could see the contents. In either case, if you were deemed a non-recycler, they just didn't take the trash. They left it there with a big yellow sticker on it pointing out your error. That's as big an incentive / penalty as the proposed fine.

 

Great idea! Taxpayers who are funding the waste department having services denied to them. Is there a point upon which with trash piling up the city finally gives in?

 

Admittedly this may not work everywhere. Given that I've only seen this system implemented in smaller towns in upstate NY, I don't know how successful it would be in a more densly urban environment. In the setting I saw it in, people didn't like trash piling up, so they adapted as necessary and began pulling out the recyclables so they could have the trash removed. This 'guilt based' system may not work as well where you have trash stored in an area away from your principal residence (back alley, or in a dumpster area, etc.) and/or you don't have a vested interest in ownership of the property, how it's maintained.

 

All I know is that everyone started recycling before too long, and it didn't entail significant fines on the residents to do it.

 

Whether it's carrot, stick, or other means such as guilt, I still take issue with the idea that city governments need to be pushing their residents to recycle, especially when the jury is still out about the efficacy of such programs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I understand the environmental value of this program, but it's really a cloaked tax and a disincentive to live in the city proper

 

I see it only as a tax on those who don't participate. The bigger issue you might raise is the fact that you're paying for a service that, if run correctly, is profitable. If the city is making money on the sale of recyclables, shouldn't that benefit translate back to the residents in some form (lower cost of waste removal, etc.).

 

On the flip side, commercial manufaturing pays to have its metal scrap taken away, which is then sold by said scrap dealers for a profit, so I guess it's about access to market.

 

...because of course no exceptions will be made, and any senior citizen who doesn't recycle will be clubbed like a baby fur seal

 

Your ideas intrigue me. You've killed two birds with one stone here. You've encouraged recycling, and at the same time reduced the burden on our nation's entitlement programs.

 

Mayday For President: Clubbing back the deficit one retiree at a time!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a big proponent of recycling especially for aluminum and glass, two of the most easily recycled materials which use far less energy to re-use than produce "from scratch".  HOWEVER, I think the city is taking the wrong approach in their attempt to get people to recycle.  We can't punish people for not doing something and expect a positive response.  It simply won't happen.  Instead of punishing why don't we reward people for recycling?  If these chips can monitor your recycling trends then lets reduce or eliminate the garbage collection fee for the people that recycle. 

 

The people know that the city is making money (or at least not spending as much) on recycling and they just want their cut.  I mean, citizens in Cleveland went from getting free trash pick-up to being charged ($8 a month?) a fee and now they are facing potential fines for not recycling.  The citizens are doing work to sort and recycle their trash and they feel as if they're being punished for it.  If we all work to reduce city expenditures (by recycling) then the citizens should see some benefit from that.  Unfortunately, since our budgets never seem to be balanced the government is always looking for new sources of revenue so public money saved through citizen action is rarely if ever returned to the citizens.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We're in the pilot program, and we're not sure if the city actually recycles our recyclables, I sh!t you not.  I have only ever seen one type of truck......  a regular trash truck where the guy has to pick up our rediculously large and heavy city-issued cans and dump the contents into the truck by hand.  I've yet to see the new trucks with arms.  Oh, and the cans they give you are so huge, most times (unless you've been cleaning a whole lot), you cannot fill the recycling or trash bins.  We put our trash out every week cause otherwise it starts to smell, but we don't put out the recycling unless it's full, which takes a few weeks.  So I guess we'll have to start putting out both cans all the time so we don't get fined, so now that means there's gonna be two containers I have to pick @ssholes' trash out of who think our trash cans are public property......  And then of course there's the rainwater and snow issue, because the cans get left open, and they're so heavy themselves that they're really hard to empty.  I'd so much rather just put bags out like Cleveland Heights.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If these chips can monitor your recycling trends then lets reduce or eliminate the garbage collection fee for the people that recycle.

 

Agreed.  A system such as the one you state would be very similar to the proposed tax on storm water; for which residents can claim a credit by installing rain barrels, cisterns, permeable pavement, rain gardens, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We're in the pilot program, and we're not sure if the city actually recycles our recyclables, I sh!t you not. I have only ever seen one type of truck...... a regular trash truck where the guy has to pick up our rediculously large and heavy city-issued cans and dump the contents into the truck by hand. I've yet to see the new trucks with arms. Oh, and the cans they give you are so huge, most times (unless you've been cleaning a whole lot), you cannot fill the recycling or trash bins. We put our trash out every week cause otherwise it starts to smell, but we don't put out the recycling unless it's full, which takes a few weeks. So I guess we'll have to start putting out both cans all the time so we don't get fined, so now that means there's gonna be two containers I have to pick @ssholes' trash out of who think our trash cans are public property...... And then of course there's the rainwater and snow issue, because the cans get left open, and they're so heavy themselves that they're really hard to empty. I'd so much rather just put bags out like Cleveland Heights.

 

We are not in the pilot program but 4 streets east of us they are.  You are absolutely correct, I know I have seen the same truck picking up both.  Not sure what happens to the recyclables.  We take ours to the dump points all around the city but still not sure what happens after that.  I am however in favor of curbside recycling and the fine for those who don't.  Philadelphia does the same thing. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

wondering how they are going to deal with the huge dumpsters that get emptied twice a week from our building.  I'd love to recycle, but at I have to take my recycle bins to a different location.  Even when I recycle at work - in the blue paper/aluminum can bin - I've seen the people at night come around and collect it and throw it all in the same recepticle.

 

If this isn't a ploy to make more money, then I don't know what is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So does anyone really know what happens to the stuff in those huge bins throughout the City of Cleveland?  How does the stuff get separated?  Where does it go to?  I would really love to know the answer.  If all the stuff ends up in a landfill then why the heII am I wasting energy rinsing cans and bottles and driving the stuff to a bin?  That seems to be less "green" than if I put it all in one can that gets picked up weekly. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So does anyone really know what happens to the stuff in those huge bins throughout the City of Cleveland?  How does the stuff get separated?  Where does it go to?  I would really love to know the answer.  If all the stuff ends up in a landfill then why the heII am I wasting energy rinsing cans and bottles and driving the stuff to a bin?  That seems to be less "green" than if I put it all in one can that gets picked up weekly. 

 

it currently goes to a Waste Management material recovery facility (MRF) in Oakwood (on I-271).  this is where all of WM's waste collection from NEO arrives before transferred onto trucks for the landfill.  This is also where all of the recycling that WM collects/handles or is contracted from drop offs (many cities in NEO) arrives and is sorted.  More info here: http://www.zerowasteneo.org/profiles/blogs/waste-management-recycle

 

here are a few more photos of what appears to be the MRF in Oakwood: http://www.gcbl.org/image-galleries/economy/recycling-trash

 

also, many waste trucks have multiple compartments to allow for co-collection, so it is very possible that the same truck can pick up both recylables and regular household trash.  here is an example:

http://www.gov.chilliwack.bc.ca/main/page.cfm?id=1830

 

nb, Cleveland has announced that they signed a new contract with a different company to handle recycling in the future - not sure when this starts, but the process should be similar.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ohio needs a "bottle bill" establishing a deposit for recyclable cans and bottles.  The bottle bill has been blocked by the soft drink industry and their "small government" philosophical buddies who have been running the Ohio Statehouse for decades.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ohio needs a "bottle bill" establishing a deposit for recyclable cans and bottles. The bottle bill has been blocked by the soft drink industry and their "small government" philosophical buddies who have been running the Ohio Statehouse for decades.

 

I question the effectiveness of deposits for bottles and cans.  You need to put a lot of infrastructure in place to simply allow individuals to return cans and bottles for the deposit.  The amount of material and energy that goes into this collection system may offset the increase in the percentage of bottles and cans being recycled. 

 

Simply put, the juice might not be worth the squeeze.  I'll see if I can find a study on it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a lot of people miss the point of recycling. It's better to NOT buy a lot of stuff and throw a bit of stuff in the trash and never recycle, than to buy a ton of stuff, throw some away, but recycle a lot. I think we tend to ignore the REDUCE and REUSE aspect all too often, while favoring recycling, because recycling makes us feel good even though reducing or reusing might have been environmentally friendlier options.

 

Every week I recycle the same two things, a milk jug and a cardboard box of cereal, while throwing away a grocery bag's worth of garbage. I feel so silly carting my big blue cart to the curb so that some big truck that probably gets 8 mpg can pick it up then drive 20 feet to the next driveway over and pick up whatever 2 things the little old lady next to me recycled. Next comes the garbage truck, which probably gets the same 8 mpg, and picks up what little trash I put out.

 

I think as a society we need to be more smart about recycling. Think about it, do we REALLY need two giant trucks going down the street, driveway to driveway, getting terrible gas mileage, emitting CO2 and other greenhouse gasses, so that recyclables can be collected? How many tons of CO2 are emitted from recycling trucks each year? It seems to me that a more environmentally friendly way to do it, is to have monthly recycling pick ups. As people above have stated, the blue bins that the city of Cleveland distributes are HUGE and take weeks to fill up. Think of the cost and energy savings we'd have if we reduced recycling pick-ups. In the past I've tended to let my blue bin fill up before carting it to the curb. With the implementation of the recycling "tax", I will now have to be sure I take it out every week. So for people like myself and others who already recycle but are being environmentally conscious by only putting the bins out when they are full, will be doing more harm to the environment as the cumulative emissions of the  "stop and go" effect of the big trucks will quickly multiply.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a lot of people miss the point of recycling. It's better to NOT buy a lot of stuff and throw a bit of stuff in the trash and never recycle, than to buy a ton of stuff, throw some away, but recycle a lot. I think we tend to ignore the REDUCE and REUSE aspect all too often, while favoring recycling, because recycling makes us feel good even though reducing or reusing might have been environmentally friendlier options.

 

Every week I recycle the same two things, a milk jug and a cardboard box of cereal, while throwing away a grocery bag's worth of garbage. I feel so silly carting my big blue cart to the curb so that some big truck that probably gets 8 mpg can pick it up then drive 20 feet to the next driveway over and pick up whatever 2 things the little old lady next to me recycled. Next comes the garbage truck, which probably gets the same 8 mpg, and picks up what little trash I put out.

 

I think as a society we need to be more smart about recycling. Think about it, do we REALLY need two giant trucks going down the street, driveway to driveway, getting terrible gas mileage, emitting CO2 and other greenhouse gasses, so that recyclables can be collected? How many tons of CO2 are emitted from recycling trucks each year? It seems to me that a more environmentally friendly way to do it, is to have monthly recycling pick ups. As people above have stated, the blue bins that the city of Cleveland distributes are HUGE and take weeks to fill up. Think of the cost and energy savings we'd have if we reduced recycling pick-ups. In the past I've tended to let my blue bin fill up before carting it to the curb. With the implementation of the recycling "tax", I will now have to be sure I take it out every week. So for people like myself and others who already recycle but are being environmentally conscious by only putting the bins out when they are full, will be doing more harm to the environment as the cumulative emissions of the "stop and go" effect of the big trucks will quickly multiply.

 

While I agree that the reduce / reuse aspect has been diminished, I'll also tell you that recycling is a great way to recapture some of that waste. I'm guessing that you are probably single, living alone (forgive me if I'm wrong). I can tell you that I have a 64 gallon container for recycling that I fill once a week, with my family of 5. Between milk, cereal, cans, newspapers, etc., if I had to wait a month I'd have at least 4 of these carts worth to pick up. I look down my street on pick up day and I can see the families that have similar volume. Now, hoping that these are actually recycled (and not just thrown into the dump anyway), this is reducing a significant amount of trash from landfills.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cities Increasingly Turn to 'Trash Police' to Enforce Recycling Laws

 

In a growing number of cities across the U.S., local governments are placing computer chips in recycling bins to collect data on refuse disposal, and then fining residents who don't participate in recycling efforts and forcing others into educational programs meant to instill respect for the environment.

 

From Charlotte, N.C., to Cleveland, Ohio, from Boise, Idaho, to Flint, Mich., the green police are spreading out. And that alarms some privacy advocates who are asking: Should local governments have the right to monitor how you divide your paper cups from your plastic forks? Is that really the role of government?

 

In Dayton, Ohio, chips placed in recycle bins transmit information to garbage trucks to keep track of whether residents are recycling -- a program that incensed Arizona Sen. John McCain, who pointed out that the city was awarded half a million dollars in stimulus money for it.

 

http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2010/09/07/trash-police-invade-thanks-government-stimulus/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...