Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Where's Your Cart?

From Boston Recycling:

"Where's Your Cart?  We noticed that you did not have your new recycling cart out and would like to encourage you to join the thousands of residents already participating in the 'Recycle More' program.  You can fill your cart with the following items:...."

This is the little note that the Boston Recycling  people have bothered to leave two weeks running (this week in full color) in my mailbox.  The cart in question is a huge monstrosity of a trash can which I believe is intended to promote single stream recycling.  Why can't I just single stream recycle in my small easy-to-carry-up-and-down-three-flights-of-stairs-even-when-full portable blue bins?  Which is what I will continue to do.

The big cart does have two advantages:  wheels and a lid.  The wheels though don't make it any easier to maneuver up and down that last flight of steep granite steps and I don't really have the space for it alongside the house.  The lid is great for those windy days when most of the recycling in my small bins gets blown around the street.  Still, a lid does not a recycling bin make.

Many of my neighbors have resorted to the big carts but I'll stick with the smaller bins.  They're more manageable.  And it's rare that I have so much to recycle that even a quarter of the big cart would be full making it just that much more inconvenient to haul such a small load in such a big container up and down the steps.

It will take more than big carts to promote recycling among those who don't do it.  On trash days I am appalled at the volume of perfectly useable, clean stuff (children's toys and furniture, mostly) that gets kicked to the curb and not the recycling bin.

Maybe recycling only reinforces or pardons the mindless consumerism that got us into this trashy mess.   Remember, it's reduce what you buy and re-use all you can,  first.  Then, finally, recycle. 


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  2. The 55 gallon recycling containers blew me away, too, when they first got dropped up and down the street.

    I was content with my small recycle container, but I've got a convenient place outside for the blue behemoth. I keep the small one in the kitchen, emptying it weekly into the big wheeled one. That goes out to the curb every five to six weeks. I'm afraid the recycle guys will break the small one the more chances they get to throw it around.

    Near here there used to be a Free Box, but Inspectional Services fixed that for us.

    My relatives from the depression era used to say "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without," which amounts to much the same thing as the modern "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle."

    Jonas Prang

  3. I like the idea of transmission from the smaller indoor to the larger outdoor bin and may try that.