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Posts Tagged ‘recycling’

San Antonio has begun curbside recycling of plastic bags

As of August 1, to be exact. “We are starting with a new recycling processor that can accept the bags so that allows us to add it to the list of items we can accept,” [Solid Waste Management Department Public Relations Manager Tiffany] Edwards said, adding that the move gives San Antonians another option to […]

Chron on One Bin

The Chronicle is ambivalent about the city’s One Bin for All proposal. Details of the One Bin For All recycling proposal aren’t even solid yet, but groups like the Sierra Club have already started to line up against it. This gut rejection seems misguided, but people should have a healthy skepticism of this relatively untested […]

It’s past time for a garbage fee

Yes, this. For years, Houston’s Solid Waste Management Department Director Harry Hayes has suggested the city implement a garbage fee to expand curbside recycling and pay for other initiatives. And for years, Mayor Annise Parker has demurred. Now, with a looming budget deficit that could force widespread layoffs and cuts to services, the idea may […]

One Bin For All RFPs

Yesterday was a big day for the One Bin for All proposal. Thursday [was] the deadline for private companies to submit bids to the city to build and run the facility. The bid guidelines call for a 75 percent diversion rate — that is, only 25 percent of solid waste should end up in landfills. […]

Another expansion of single stream recycling

From the inbox: Mayor Annise Parker and Harry J. Hayes, Director of the Solid Waste Management Department (SWMD), are pleased to announce the addition of 62,000 to the City’s popular automated curbside recycling program. As part of the expansion, residents in neighborhoods throughout Houston will receive a new 96-gallon green automated cart similar to the […]

Melanie Scruggs: Ways Houston can increase its recycling rate

Note: From time to time, I solicit guest posts from various individuals on different topics. While I like to think I know a little something about a lot of things, I’m fortunate to be acquainted with a number of people who know a whole lot about certain topics, and who are willing to share some […]

City issues One Bin RFPs

From the inbox: Mayor Annise Parker today announced the issuance of a Request for Proposals and creation of an advisory committee for the One Bin for All waste management and diversion project. The City of Houston invites submittals from short-listed firms that participated in an earlier Request for Qualifications process. “One Bin for All will […]

SA City Council to begin the plastic bag debate

I look forward to seeing what direction they go. City staffers Wednesday plan to recommend to the City Council’s Governance Committee that San Antonio move forward with a ban on single-use plastic and paper bags. The recommendation comes after vetting by the Solid Waste Management Department, which researched policies in other cities across the state […]

Recycling cartons

More curbside recycling options. Houstonians accustomed to throwing out glossy cardboard cartons of milk, juice, soup and others foods and beverages now can send them to the curb in a green container for recycling. The Carton Council, a consortium of carton manufacturers, has helped the city’s existing paper recycling processors purchase equipment that will keep […]

The Trib writes about One Bin For All

Mostly familiar information if you’ve been following this story, but a good overview if it’s new to you. Laura Spanjian, Houston’s director of sustainability, says the city is spending millions to expand its conventional recycling service and is still evaluating all the options for its one-bin concept. The city hopes that the one-bin idea would […]

San Antonio plastic bag ban update

Here’s an update on the city of San Antonio’s effort to regulate plastic bag usage, which may include a ban. It’s written by San Antonio City Council member Cris Medina, who is the point person for the effort. Late last year, after multiple conversations with members of the Citizen’s Environmental Advisory Committee (members are appointed […]

Center Street recycling facility is closed

So says Swamplot. Multiple emails to a couple of Heights neighorhood mailing lists sounded the alarm as well. This has been a long time coming. Originally, it was supposed to have been closed at the end of 2012, but I guess that extension got extended. With the planned expansion of single stream recycling, locations like […]

Recycle that cooking oil

A public service announcement from the city. The holidays are upon us and that means cooking turkeys, hams and other foods that either require cooking oils to prepare or that generate a surplus of grease when cooked. Used cooking oils and greases, when disposed down the kitchen drain, cool, harden and clog the pipes. Diluting […]

San Antonio begins plastic bag ban consideration

I very much look forward to seeing how this goes. San Antonio spends about $1.3 million annually cleaning up plastic bags, while an estimated $25 million is spent across the state, [District 7 Councilman Cris] Medina’s Council Consideration Request says. Council members Ray Lopez, Ivy Taylor, Rey Saldaña and Shirley Gonzales have signed Medina’s request, […]

What’s on the agenda for Mayor Parker in her third term

Now that Mayor Parker has been safely re-elected, with a better-than-expected margin, what does she plan to do from here? A triumphant Parker on Tuesday lauded her “decisive” victory but quickly shifted her focus to the coming two years, listing her third-term priorities as jobs, economic development, rebuilding streets and drainage, and financial accountability. “There […]

The next wave of curbside recycling

From last week, some good news for those of who that still don’t have the 96-gallon wheeled recycling bins. Houston will roll out its biweekly, automated curbside recycling service to 70,000 additional residences throughout the city just in time for Thanksgiving, the Department of Solid Waste Management announced [last] Friday. The expansion will bring service […]

Next wave of recycling bins approved

From last week: City Council on Wednesday OK’d funding to complete efforts to double the number of 96-gallon green recycling bins parked at city curbs, but it is unclear which 70,000 homes will be next to receive the service. [...] The delay in naming which neighborhoods will be part of the second expansion comes from […]

If you want your trash to be collected

It’s best to put your trash can where the automated pickup arm can get it. Last year, at least 9,000 trash cans in the city were left uncollected at some point, according to records kept by the city, a small percentage of the total number of bins emptied in a year, but enough to slow […]

City seeks One Bin For All RFQs

Calling all vendors. The city of Houston took a step forward on its “One Bin for All” project this week. The project would allow residents to discard trash and recyclables in one bin to be sorted at a new $100 million facility, which would be built and run by a private firm. On June 12, […]

Collecting compost from restaurants

The city of Austin takes another step on its path towards zero waste. Austin restaurants and other food businesses will have to compost food scraps starting in 2016, under new rules the City Council OK’d Thursday. Food service businesses — including fast-food chains, caterers, cafeterias and bars — that are bigger than 5,000 square feet […]

It sure is nice to budget when you have money

Mayor Parker has released her FY2014 budget, and it’s great news for those of you that have been waiting for their single-stream recycling bin. More than 100,000 Houston homes will be added to the city’s single-stream recycling program by this fall, doubling the number of households receiving the 96-gallon green bins. About 35,000 homes will […]

City response on “One Bin For All”

Last week, I asked several environmental groups for feedback on the city’s One Bin For All proposal. I said I would follow up on that with the city. I have their response here, but before I get to it I want to report that I got some further feedback from David Weinberg of the Texas […]

What other environmental groups think about “One Bin For All”

As you know, last week the city announced that it had won the $1 million runnerup prize from the Bloomberg Foundation that would enable it to begin work on a single-bin solution for solid waste and recycling. While this announcement was generally met with cheers, the Texas Campaign for the Environment was not among those […]

Not everyone likes the One Bin solution

From the inbox: Texas Campaign for the Environment vowed today to mobilize Houstonians against Mayor Annise Parker’s so-called “One Bin for All” proposal, saying that the scheme will take recycling away from the minority of residents who already have it, delay expanding it to new neighborhoods and lay the groundwork for future environmental damage. “This […]

Houston wins $1 million runnerup Bloomberg prize

From the Mayor’s office: Mayor Annise Parker today announced that Houston’s One Bin for All idea is one of the five winners in the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge, a competition to inspire American cities to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life – and that ultimately can be shared with other […]

Still fighting the Waller County landfill

I’ve written before about a battle in Waller County over a proposed landfill that would be built there. While the landfill has moved closer to being approved, it’s not yet a done deal, and its opponents are still fighting against it. “This landfill has done more to divide our county than anything I’ve ever seen. […]

Adventures in water marketing

The headline on this story is about Texans’ increasing interest in recycling water. That sounds nice, doesn’t it? But there’s another way of describing it that maybe isn’t so appealing. Experts say recycled wastewater will play a key role in satisfying the thirst of a rapidly growing population. While reuse now provides 2 percent of […]

Vote for Houston in the Mayor’s Challenge final

From the HuffPo: Vote below for your favorite idea among the 20 Mayors Challenge finalists! Voting is open from February 20 through March 6. The Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge is a competition designed to inspire America’s mayors to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life. The Huffington Post and Bloomberg Philanthropies […]

More on metal recycling

The Chron has a followup story on metal recycling and hexavalent chromium. Houston air experts plan to deepen their investigation into the air outside metal recycling companies after their measurements showed – apparently for the first time – that the businesses could be a source of potent fumes known to cause cancer. “We are searching […]

Curbside composting

Way to go, Austin. City officials are asking Austinites in 7,900 households in five parts of the city to separate their banana peels, egg shells, meat, chicken bones, milk cartons, leaves and any other organic material from their household trash and put the material into a new rolling garbage cart. The one-year trial run will […]

Recycling pollution

This is unfortunate. The calls to the city of Houston’s 311 help line came in the early morning and the middle of the night – complaints of red smoke, yellow smoke, explosions, fire, a child having trouble breathing. Reports like these – 189 of them over the last five years – led Houston air authorities […]

Compost that Christmas tree

Let your Christmas tree do some good after you get rid of it. When that Christmas tree comes down this year, take a moment to imagine its next incarnation: Chipped up and mixed into soil, it might soon secure new grasses along some South Texas highway or sustain vegetable starts in someone’s garden. Adding weathered […]

“One Bin For All” in the running for prize money

This happened before the election, which now seems as a remote a time as the 19th century. Houston is one of 20 finalist cities from among the 305 nationwide that applied for a $5 million grant from the Bloomberg Philanthropies for the boldest local initiative to address a national problem. The city’s proposal, “Total Reuse […]

One bin to rule them all

This would be an innovative approach to deal with Houston’s unacceptably low recycling rate. Under what is being called “Total Reuse: One Bin for All,” residents would wheel everything to the curb in one barrel and let the city sort it out. If Houston can find a private-sector partner to help it build what could […]