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Posts tagged ‘waste diversion rate’

Truck Wraps Deliver Words of Wisdom, Inspire Recycling

Every year, Salt Lake City’s low-emission waste collection trucks get a new look. In years past, the vehicles highlighted downsizing your garbage cans, the beauty of recycling, and the goal to ditch disposables. This year, the truck wraps deliver words of wisdom to inspire more thoughtful consumption and better recycling habits.

Truck wrap with Annie Leonard quote: There is no such thing as away. When we throw anything away it must go somewhere.

Taking a Cue from Annie Leonard, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., and Robert Swan

One side of this year’s truck wraps display useful mantras encouraging SLC residents to recycle. The other side features quotes from three prominent environmental activists:

Annie Leonard is the founder of The Story of Stuff Project, which advocates for reducing our consumption and being more thoughtful about where our stuff goes. As her truck wrap quote says: there’s no such thing as away.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is an environmental activist and former senior attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council. He currently serves as president of the grassroots Waterkeeper Alliance. His quote succinctly emphasizes the impact of sustainable living on our country’s well being.

Echoing Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s sentiment, Robert Swan’s quote is a call to action for every individual to take steps towards protecting the environment. Robert Swan is a climate activist and the first person to walk to the North and South pole. His organization, 2041, works to educate the public about the impact of climate change on the environment, especially at the poles.

By quoting these leaders, the truck wraps pinpoint the importance of community action geared towards protecting the environment and building sustainable communities.

One of the easiest ways to follow in the footsteps of these activists is to reduce, reuse, and recycle.

Truck wrap with Robert F. Kennedy Jr. quote: The most patriotic thing you can do is to take care of the environment and try to live sustainably.

Is Recycling Still Worth It?

Presented on the flip sides of the trucks are statistics about SLC’s waste management habits. In particular, they emphasize the importance of proper waste diversion in the form of recycling and composting.

Does that surprise you? With recycling changing as markets adjusted to new rules from China on contamination, there has been question as to whether recycling is even “worth it” any more.

We’re here to tell you it is and that’s a key point we wanted to emphasize with the new truck wrap designs. Let’s take a moment to dig in to that detail:

The recycling import ban that came from China in 2018 has complex causes and also underscores that recycling is a commodity market that has always experienced ups and downs.

But there is good news amid the shake-up. In particular, it’s forcing U.S. recycling processors and consumers to get back to basics: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle . . . Properly.

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SLC Seeking Comments on Proposed Business Recycling Ordinance

Photo: IntelFreePress via Flickr.

Recycling stations at Moscone Convetion Center to help achieve 75% waste diversion, as mandated by city of San Francisco. Photo: IntelFreePress via Flickr.

Did you know? The waste diversion rate for Salt Lake City homes hovers around 38%. This means that roughly 38% of all waste collected through the City’s residential collection program is recycled or composted.

Now compare that to the estimated 10% diversion rate for Salt Lake City businesses.

In an effort to increase business and multi-family (i.e. apartment) recycling rates, Salt Lake City is proposing a new Business & Multi-Family Recycling Ordinance that would require property owners or managers where 4 or more cubic yards of solid waste are generated per week to:

  • Subscribe to a recycling collection service from an authorized waste hauler.
  • Designate area(s) for recycling containers.
  • Implement a recycling program for use by occupants, employees or residents that is as convenient as trash collection.
  • Distribute educational recycling information to occupants, employees or residents annually.

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