Monday, September 24, 2007

Eureka Garbage Problems

There they go talking about mandatory garbage service in Eureka again. I can't help but wonder, if Eureka ends up doing this, will the rest of the county follow suit?

They say they're doing this to meet state requirements of reducing waste sent to landfills by 50%, which Eureka, among other cities, has fallen short of.

Seems to me I read somewhere that Eureka is doing better than some places down south, San Francisco being one of them. I could be wrong on that but that's my recollection. Doesn't San Francisco have mandatory garbage service?

I'm not sure about that but I know they get three garbage containers down there so everything gets separated from the start: A green one for green waste. Blue for recyclables and black for regular garbage. Seems to me if they're doing that and still doing worse than we are, we shouldn't be following their example.
Of the four recommendations the Citizen Action Committee made in regards garbage service and recycling, two sound interesting:

The voluntary curbside pickup of green waste would be nice, but how much more expensive will that make this whole thing?

What does universal mean in regards to "universal pick up of bulky items"? I imagine that just means City Garbage will drive around and pick up any old appliances they see laying around. That might be nice but, again, how much more expensive will that make the mandatory garbage service?

I'll have to admit, though, I'll be the first to take advantage of the bulky item pick up. Then I'll finally get around to dumping that old washing machine that's been sitting on our back patio for going on four years now.


At 3:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i dont use the city garbage system. i use my truck and take my garbage and recycling to the dump myself. will this change affect me? will they automatically charge me monthly for this? does anyone know any details?

At 5:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's what mandatory service usually means. You pay whether you use it or not.

At 5:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:00? do you have experience with mandatory service? how does that work? what do they do to you if you refuse to pay?

At 6:15 PM, Blogger Fred said...

I guess it's like water and sewer, except in this case, you pay for it whether you use it or not.

Quite honestly, I subscribe to garbage pick up now. I think it's a bargain.

Maybe not, after they make it mandatory.

At 6:38 PM, Blogger Pogo said...

Mandatory=you pay. Refuse to pay=lien on property. Refuse to be evicted=police with guns arrive to remove you. Resist=they kill you or incarcerate you even if you have never been guilty of illegal dumping. Welcome to "progressive" Eureka/Humboldt County/Kalifornia.
Oh, but libertarians are "fascists"!

At 7:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 7:38 AM, Anonymous 6em said...

If you're an avid recycler (meaning you recycle everything the Hawthorne Street Recycling Center takes) you won't have to pay for mandatory recycling or mandatory garbage service.

Also, by taking out the recyclable stuff from your garbage (some of which gets you money back, and some of which simply lightens your truck for the scale) you can pay close to zero money to dump your own garbage. I used to always break even -- or even come out a few coins ahead -- until they raised the tipping fee last year.

The only downsides are time spent and gas used. For me it's a better choice than a monthly garbage fee that is gonna rise 6 or 7 dollars to pay for the "privelege" of having City Garbage collect the deposits I pay on beverage containers.

The twice yearly large appliance benefit is nice, but not enough for me to buy in.

And remember, pogo, it is a choice. If you recycle well you don't have to do it. If you refuse to recycle, and refuse to pay for mandatory recycling, is society supposed to just say "Well ... okay then ... pogo shouldn't have to shoulder any responsibility for the problem of human created waste. pogo gets to do whatever pogo wants?"

At 1:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

what if a person wants to be self sufficient and take his own trash and recyclables to the dump himself? how is that not shouldering responsibility?

At 1:30 PM, Blogger Pogo said...

7:38 AM, Pogo was not making a value judgment or trying to avoid responsibility for his own rubbish. He was merely stating the facts regarding the term "mandatory". If it is to be a "choice", what is the problem?

At 2:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am too freaking old to be wasting what few precious hours I have left on the planet digging around through my household waste.

I'll pay the fee, which is not very high when you figure how little it costs per week and how much precious time rooting around in garbage it saves you.

At 2:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We old, worn-out recylers ought to get some credit for the twenty or thirty years we have spent recyling - before you youngsters started doing it and hogging all the glory, with your fancy bright plastic bins and such! In the old days, we did our good works quietly, without fanfare, not asking for a spotlight. Ah, the good old recycling days!

At 2:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, I think Anonymouse 2:28 makes a valid point!

Do you know that cutting the bottom out of a tin can so it can be flattened, thus taking up less space in the landfill, has risks?

Yes, it does! Not only can you accidentally spill soup from the can on the floor, thus causing a slip-fall hazard; but also the sharp metal edge of the can's lid can cause a nasty cut! A cut that takes longer to heal for older recyclers!

These things are important. They just cannot be laughed away!

I mean it, now! Stop laughing!

At 6:59 AM, Anonymous 6em said...

This is my second attempt to respond to pogo's last comment. I posted a response yesterday morning, but for some reason blogger lost it and it never appeared on this thread.

Anyhoo, I agree that "mandatory" is a poor word choice for the program when it does allow dedicated recyclers to opt out. I guess they mean "mandatory" in the sense that it is mandatory that everyone recylce, not mandatory that everyone pay for curbside trash and recycling. I'm not sure this is the best solution for Eureka to reach the state mandate, but it looks like the one we are headed towards.

As to your comment, 2:28, you seem to be saying that you don't want to recycle at all. If that is what you mean, you should know that the program being considered would still require you to sort your recyclables and put them in the recyclable half of the new two-sided garbage can everyone in the program will be getting. So you'd still have to waste some of your precious hours recycling, but if you adopt recycling as a habit, you'll never have to sort through your garbage in the first place. You would just have to make room next to your wastebasket in the kitchen for a recyclebasket and recyle on the fly.

Well, wish me luck posting this.


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