Councilmember Richard Conlin
Councilmember Sally Clark
COUNCIL PASSES ZERO WASTE STRATEGY
Legislation will increase recycling, reduce waste, and improve transfer stations
SEATTLE – The Council, today, unanimously adopted a zero waste strategy to increase recycling, reduce trash and upgrade Seattle’s transfer stations. The zero waste strategy is the result of over eighteen months’ work led by Councilmember Richard Conlin, chair of the Environment, Emergency Management, and Utilities (EEMU) Committee, on how to improve recycling, reduce waste, and avoid building a third transfer station in the Georgetown neighborhood. Councilmember Richard Conlin said, “The Council and Seattle Public Utilities worked together to solve this problem. Instead of accepting more trash as inevitable, we are now treating waste as a resource. That’s a sea change in the way that we view it! This plan gives us a real shot at shortening our daily mile-long train to entomb garbage in the ground.” Councilmember Sally Clark said, “Today is not only a victory for Georgetown because we won’t build a new transfer station there, but also for every neighborhood in Seattle because this legislation embodies our city’s environmental ethos.”
The zero waste strategy’s main components include:
- The implementation of a new program in 2009 which will provide all single-family residences with food waste pick-up for composting.
- Plans to increase the recycling of Construction & Demolition waste.
- The renovation of the existing two transfer stations for improved recycling
- By December 2007, Seattle Public Utilities will have recommendations on whether to ban or discourage through taxation non-compostable plastic shopping bags and Styrofoam food containers.
- A $100,000 annual Waste Reduction/Recycling Matching Fund for community recycling/waste reduction initiatives
- A cap on the amount of waste Seattle will send to landfills—440,000 tons annually, the amount of trash disposed of in 2006.
Councilmember Conlin said, “With today’s vote, Seattle is once again on the cutting edge when it comes to actually walking the talk of our environmental values.”