Can It!

I spent the past weekend hanging out in San Francisco and enjoying a break from the New York City heat and humidity. I met up with Paul, one of the main guys working on Catalog Choice out of the Ecology Center. After finishing up our lunch, I walked down Haight Street, checking out the vintage shops and looking for good deals on used CDs at Amoeba.

Although the city has much to offer, I must say that one of the cooler things I discovered was its trash cans. Unlike standard cans, each of these had a separate compartment on top for recyclable cans and bottles! And it looks like people use them--each can I passed had quite a few bottles and soda cans tossed in there. It's a simple concept that's easy to implement and is doing its part to reduce waste.

In New York City, the average resident (remember, there are over 8 million of us), discards nearly four and a half pounds of waste each day--imagine how much of that waste could be prevented simply by providing easy access to a recycling bin. It's a shame how often I find myself with a soda can and nowhere to toss it except in the dump! With San Francisco's goal of diverting 75% of its landfill by 2012, we should see what steps it's taking to reach its goal. It would be great if other cities could learn from each other and figure out easy ways to make an immediate in decline in our waste production.

Click here to learn more about San Francisco's environmental initiative and here to learn more about New York City's own PLANYC 2030.

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