Maybe I am being too harsh, but it really irks me when I see good ideas wasted. This one has to do with the city's plan to offer curbside green waste pickup. Green matter will go in a separate container & be picked up on the same schedule as the trash. This has been offered only to people on the Wednesday schedule and now it will be offered to those on the Thursday one. Great! I love being able to take actions that make good green sense.
In this case, the city wants to collect green matter that can be composted by the city instead of having it go to the landfill. Mr. Field Notes commented on seeing the signs for the city's "sanitary landfill" on our drive home from the Westside, which I have to say, tends to be more eco-aware than the Eastside, that there is nothing sanitary about them. So today when we received a letter today letting us know that we can opt into the program, I immediately thought GREAT! Yes, that makes good environmental sense and if the city is going to make it easier for its residents to adopt eco-friendly behaviors, I am all for it.
If you charge people $200 a year to haul away their leaves and what not, who but people who have disposable income are going to sign up? It would cost me far less to buy a bin and take it to the city's composting area than that. That's not what they want people to do though. It would also cost me less to set up a composting area on my own property (we already have).
I am sick and tired of eco-friendly behavior costing more than eco-aversive ones. If you want to change behavior, you've got to make the desired behavior cost less than the undesired one.
Sixteen bucks a month is too much. I don't have 60 gallons a month of green waste even in green waste heavy months, like November when most of the trees shed their leaves.
Here's my solution -
Charge people a fee for waste pickup based on the weight of their waste.
That way the cost of throwing away something is relevant. It would give people incentive to use less, use what they have longer, and contribute less to the landfill. If you hit people's pocketbooks, they will change their behavior. People drive less when the price of gas goes up. If gas cost what it ought to, people would choose other methods of transportation. Of course, with my weigh the trash solution, you would have to figure out how to police people who would cheat the system by throwing their waste into someone else's bin.