Recycling: A Look At New York City

New York City, in just its five boroughs, has a population of over 8 million and in an area smaller than most states; you can just imagine how much waste is created on a daily basis. Recycling in New York City is mandatory and has been since July 1989. Before that date, starting in 1986, recycling was voluntary and as it began to catch on, recycling-educating materials from pamphlets, decals to TV and newspaper advertisements flooded the area up until 1997, when all five boroughs and all 59 districts were recycling all of the same materials. By this time an impact was being made in recycling waste right up until the events of September 11th, 2001. After the 9/11 tragedy forced budget cuts were implemented for the Department of Sanitation.

It's hard to believe that a city as populated as New York City has always been, that it took until 1881 before the first sanitation collection agency was formed. The agency was formed in an effort to clean up the city's littered streets and to stop the general population from disposing of their waste directly into the Atlantic Ocean. In 1881, the Department of Street Cleaning was formed and the New York City Police Department was no longer responsible for the waste problems. It is basically the same department today with the exception of a 1933 name change into the Department of Sanitation.

Prior to the formation of the Department of Sanitation, more than three quarters of all waste from the city of New York was simply dumped into the ocean. Just a decade later, in 1895, the very first recycling plan was implemented by Commissioner George Waring in which his plan separated household waste into three categories; there was food waste, rubbish and ash.

The only category of the three that could not be re-used was ash, and it and whatever materials came from the rubbish category that could not be re-used were put into landfills. Food waste, which went through a process of being steamed, they found, could be turned into fertilizer and grease materials that were used to produce soap. The category of rubbish was collected and re-used however possible and only as a last resort, ended up in the landfills.

New York City had filled to capacity six landfills and needed to keep them closed from 1965 to 1991, which left open only one active landfill; Fresh Kills in Staten Island, which remained the only trash-accepting landfill until it closed for good in 2001.

Other than the temporary end of recycling due to World War I in 1918, New York City has kept a steady flow of recycling going for more than a hundred years and at one time ran twenty two incinerators and eighty nine landfills.

Recycling continues today in New York City as a mandatory action for all residents, schools, institutions, agencies and all commercial businesses.



Recycling On Loon Mountain In New Hampshire
Recycling Items Like Computers & TVs
Outdoor Play Time & Recycling
Recycling: How You Can Make An Impact
Ideas For Family Travel
Recycling: How To Start And Maintain A Compost Pile
Recycling: Even Bricks Can Be ReUsed!
Recycling: Are You Doing Everything You Can?
What If You Could Be Paid To Recycle?
Recycling Our Closets
How Recycling Bags Helps The Environment
Recycling: A Look At New York City
Recycling: Putting An End To Junk Mail
Recycling: How To Prevent The Excess
Recycling At An Annual Festival
Recycling And Kids' Toys
Buying Appliances With The Energy Star Rating
Recycling: Visit A Landfill
Hotels That Recycle
Recycling And Today's Teens
Easy Ways To Recycle
Recycling To Keep Our Planet Healthy
Keeping The Environment Safe From Harmful Chemicals


Recycling Our Closets How many times have you torn through your closet and come up empty, even though..

Recycling Items Like Computers & TVs With the way technology is out-doing themselves year after year with..

Recycling And Kids' Toys One of the biggest mistakes parents make, especially in the time when their..

Recycling And Today's Teens Recycling has been around longer than any of today's young teens have been..

Related Videos:

Related News:

Do I Need to Rinse This?: The economics of recycling - Alaska Public Radio Network


Do I Need to Rinse This?: The economics of recycling
Alaska Public Radio Network
Cans and bottles clink and crash as KSKA's Anne Hillman dumps her recycling into a bin. The rules about what you can and can't put in there can be confusing, but they have a reason. So Anne hopped in a recycling truck to sort it out.

and more »

Seeking To Double Recycling, State Solicits Public's Advice - CBS Local


Detroit Free Press

Seeking To Double Recycling, State Solicits Public's Advice
CBS Local
“To assist communities beginning a robust recycling effort, the DEQ is offering up to $600,000 during fiscal year 2015″ as part of a pollution prevention grant program,” the Department of Environmental Quality said in a statement. It said that ...
Council seeks input on boosting recycling in MichiganDetroit Free Press
Public invited to meeting on state recycling plansThe Detroit News

all 47 news articles »