The bill outlines five main goals to help hit zero waste, including increased access to recycling, divert textile waste from landfills, increased city support for sustainable businesses, extended life for building materials and reduce waste (single-use plastics, junk mail).
A spokesperson from the Department of Sanitation said the agency is “committed to sending zero waste to landfills and working with [the] Council to discuss their proposals and advance ideas.” Speaker Johnson’s zero waste plans were part of a broader climate announcement and a speech that was canceled due to coronavirus concerns.
The bill is at odds with the Department of Sanitation’s current residential diversion rate which is only 18%. The policy is only a part of what needs to be done to get people to recycle more. Norman Steisel, a consultant and previous DSNY commissioner, told Waste Dive, “It’s a very modest step forward into the unknown. I think their legislative intent, which on the surface looks appealing, is going to fall far short of what needs to be done.”
Read more about recycling and New York City council measures in One Green Planet, check out these articles:
- New York City Isn’t Doing Great When it Comes to Recycling, Here’s Why and How You Can Help!
- New York City Council Bans Foie Gras Setting the Bar for the Rest of the World to Follow!
- Only 25 Percent of Americans Recycle Electronics, Let’s Change that in 2020!
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