Recycling, a top priority for the city of Scottsdale

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Scottsdale’s Environmental Quality Advisory Board discussed and revised Wednesday different policies and strategies to make recycling a top priority.

            Dan Worth, Public Works Director, presented on April 19 Scottsdale’s Community Solid Waste/Recycling Vision and Strategic Plan, which includes eight policies that aim to “reduce the disposal of waste in [their] limited landfill space.”

            According to the Plan, Scottsdale single family residential is expected to increase their recycling to 50 percent of their disposable waste by weight, city facilities to 90 percent of their disposable waste by weight, multi-family residential to 30 percent of their disposable waste by weight, and commercial facilities to 20 percent of their disposable waste by weight by 2030.

            Despite the plan’s statement on Scottsdale’s community expressing broad support for recycling, Steven Schloesser, vice chair, said giving people the choice to recycle or not, is not the best option, adding,

            “If there are no mandates or city laws to convey people to even consider it, people are not going to comply.”

            Alisa McMahon, chair, said she agreed that recycling needed to be mandated in apartment complexes, noting,

            “If it’s already included in their bill and it’s offered, then people are going to want to recycle more.”

            Anthony Floyd, Green Building Program manager, said a possible strategy for increasing recycling in the multi-family residential sector of the community would be to implement a “valet service for trash.” He said the residents only need to separate their trash and leave their bag outside their door for it to be “picked up” and properly disposed. The “only drawback,” he said, was that the residencies needed to have a proper recycling bin for it to be collected.

            “This service plays in our favor,” Floyd said.

            Nonetheless, Tim Conner, staff representative and Floyd both said recycling in city facilities and programs was going to be an “easier task.”

            Conner said Scottsdale’s library was “doing a pretty good job” recycling their material.

            Floyd said offices and city facilities are recycling about 80 percent of their disposable trash by weight as of today, adding,

            “The city does way better than the public.”

            The board members also discussed updates on their “Idling Gets You Nowhere” campaign and their schools testing for lead in the drinking water program.

            Conner said the “Idling Gets You Nowhere” campaign was to move forward wanting to place its icon in the city’s water bills and in schools too.

However, Jim Lane, mayor of Scottsdale, wanted to wait until the school year started to inform the boards of their decision, McMahon said.

Arnold Siegel, board member, said their school drinking water testing program is showing “mostly good results,” taking most of the lead out, having only 5 percent of targeted faucets and sinks needing to be finished. He said the program wanted to “spread out” from schools and treat Scottsdale’s water in parks and community centers where after-school programs are held. After the program is finished with the public-school sector, the board would like to contact charter and private schools to ask permission for testing, he added.

 

 

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