Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

recycling

recycling

  • As City Council Continues Push for Sanitation Funding, Administration Touts Investments 'In a Lot of the Right Places'

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Trash and sanitation have become a top issue for the City Council in this year’s budget season, but Mayor Eric Adams’s $99.7 billion executive budget proposal for the 2023 fiscal year that begins July 1 failed to fund many Council demands. At a hearing on Tuesday, Council members questioned administration officials on their sanitation priorities — from corner basket pickups to composting — and their approach to a problem that has

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  • How Trash Became a Top-of-the-Heap City Budget Issue

    Council Member Chi Ossé on a sanitation tour of his district (photo: John McCarten/NYC Council Media Unit)


    Trash has become among the most prominent issues in this year’s New York City budget negotiations, as well as the focus of larger policy debates about how the city handles its garbage and recycling.

    The infamous mountains of black bags that clutter sidewalks, the overflowing waste baskets at street corners, and the litter on city streets have all been the subject of significant attention from Mayor Eric Adams, Comptroller Brad Lander, and many members of the New York City Council,

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  • Letter To The Editor: Papering Over Recycling Success

    Paper recycling (photo: Michael Anton/NY City Department of Sanitation))


    To the Editor:  

    The March 28, 2022 column, “For the Earth, It’s Essential New York Leaders Pass Extended Producer Responsibility,” by New York League of Conservation Voters President Julie Tighe misses the mark by urging lawmakers in Albany to pass an Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) policy. State legislators should pursue a more deliberative approach to consider New

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  • What Comes First in City's Reset on Food Waste? Skip the Truck

    Compost collection (photo: New York City Department of Sanitation)


    Last week was Food Waste Action Week in the United Kingdom and across Canada.

    The focus? Reducing and preventing food waste, with a variety of programs supporting smarter purchasing and cooking, with the goal of attacking what nearly every household generates too much of.

    By the (Canadian) numbers: 63% of the food households throw away is considered avoidable, meaning it could have been

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  • Max Politics Podcast: The Future of NYC Trash, with City Council Sanitation Chair Sandy Nurse

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    City Council Member Sandy Nurse (photo: @SandyforCouncil)


    February 4, 2022 - Max Politics Podcast: The Future of Garbage and Trash, with City Council Member Sandy Nurse

    City Council Member Sandy Nurse, the new chair of the Council's Sanitation Committee, joined the show to discuss her background in recycling and green jobs, her approach to chairing the committee, the future of organics recycling, commercial waste zones, curbside trash containerization, and more.

    Listen to the conversation and let us know what

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  • The Dangerous Persistence of Plastic, and What New York City Needs To Do About It

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    Garbage (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Our trashy story begins with a wartime question: after mass-producing aluminum, steel, and plastics for the military to fight Nazis, what happens when the war is over? What if, instead of reverting to peacetime manufacturing, America could charge ahead, simultaneously creating and fulfilling a civilian “need?”

    The rest is advertising history. Over the course of a few

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  • Kathryn Garcia Talks Trash

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    Kathryn Garcia (photo via the Department of Sanitation)


    This could be the election that flips an old maxim on its head: we may soon find out that there are many different Democratic ways to pick up the trash.

    While garbage probably won’t be among the top issues most voters care about when electing the next mayor of New York City, what better opportunity for a real conversation about how the city handles its trash and recycling than having the recently-departed sanitation commissioner among the candidates vying for the city’s top job.

    Kathryn

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  • Informal Recyclers are Essential to a Just and Green NYC; Here's 7 Things We Must Do To Help Them Survive

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    Canners redeeming their work (photo: Carlos Rivea for Sure We Can)


    In New York City, there are an estimated 8,000 informal canners, or people who collect, sort, and redeem deposit-based containers for a living. Earning a nickel per can or bottle, canners straddle a liminal space in society: though often visible pushing carts with bulging bags through the city, they work in the shadows because of fear of harassment, shame,

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  • City Fiscal Crisis is an Opportunity to Reimagine Failing Programs, Like Organics Recycling

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    Questions about recycling abound (photo: Michael Anton/Sanitation)


    The May 13 op-ed by Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and City Council Member Antonio Reynoso, New York City Must Keep and Expand Organics Collection, It’s an Essential Service, suffers from two major fallacies.

    The authors begin their piece:

     “While is it is no secret that the city’s curbside organics collection program doesn’t pay

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  • The Coronavirus Crisis Reinforces the Climate Emergency, Our City Budget Must Recognize That

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    City Council Member Antonio Reynoso, the author (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    These months will go down as one of the most trying periods in our city’s history. We are consumed by the grief of lost loved ones, colleagues, and neighbors, while facing a level of economic uncertainty not seen in generations. In this moment of crisis, many of us feel compelled to put on blinders and focus solely on addressing the present situation, and there is no doubt that efforts to combat COVID-19 will require vast resources and attention from our best

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  • Fighting Climate Change and Offering Good Green Jobs: New York City Must Save Its Recycling and Organics Composting Programs

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    Mayor de Blasio at a garbage facility (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Even as the global COVID-19 shutdown produces fortuitous environmental benefits such as cleaner air due to a huge decline in travel, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is cynically using the pandemic to justify backtracking on pollution standards

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  • Stop the Rat Takeover with the Humble Brown Bin

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    (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)


    When the New York Times announced that Rats Are Taking Over New York City, the widely-shared article and subsequent discussion overlooked one obvious remedy: reboot New York City’s stalled, neglected Organics Collection Program, and use it to take away a primary food source for rats near residential buildings.

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