Is the curbside garbage can headed for the dustbin of history? The city of Palo Alto has launched a pilot project that eliminates curbside garbage bins, using only compost and recycling bins. The aim of the project is to achieve zero landfill waste, a goal San Francisco and other Bay Area cities also hope to reach. We talk about what consumers can do to reduce waste and keep their compostable and recyclable trash out of the landfill.
Paul Toulmin is officially in charge of listener services — he responds to audience questions and complaints. But inside the KQED building he is better known for his efforts to get staff to sort their trash correctly.
A Sample Email from Paul
Quick follow up based on discoveries today
*Food does not go in Landfill can, it goes in COMPOST, the tan bin that says Compost
*Hand towels & napkins go in COMPOST, not Landfill can
*Coffee Cup lids go in RECYCLE BLUE Bin, not the Landfill can. Cups go in COMPOST
*Plastic (not potato based compostable) utensils – Forks, Knives, Spoons should be Washed, not left in the sink or tossed in the Landfill can or Compost – can go in Recycle but then there might not be a fork when you next need one. Management does not provide untensils…
*No plastic bags, plastic film or any form of film in COMPOST or RECYCLE bins, it goes in the Landfill Bin.
YOUR HOME CITY OR TOWN MAY HAVE A DIFFERENT SET OF RULES, BUT WE HAVE TO LIVE BY THE SAN FRANCISCO RULES here at KQED Public Radio.
Jared Blumenfeld, regional administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Pacific Southwest Region
Mark Murray, executive director of Californians Against Waste
Jay Ramos, manager of the Materials Recovery Facility in Monterey County
Paul Toulmin, listener services at KQED Radio