Waste collection franchising by cities is one of the key ways municipalities can meet California’s goal to reduce landfilling by 75 percent, according to a new study on how to manage waste and recycling in the region.
The report, “Cleaning Up Waste and Recycling Management and Securing the Benefits” by the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy (LAANE), comes after the U.S. Conference of Mayors recently adopted a measure that calls for federal and state governments to recognize cities’ rights to enact ordinances to reduce waste in their communities, according to a news release.
The report examines the effects of waste in recycling, the systems of management and makes reform recommendations.
Here are 10 highlights of the report:
- All cities should adopt zero waste goals. They should maximize recycling and reduce waste and pollution as much as possible.
- Cities should implement recycling and organic waste collection in separate containers from waste. Cities with a three-bin collection system report up to 80-percent diversion.
- Organic waste should be composted. California no longer considers alternative daily cover as diversion.
- Education is key and will enhance participation and reduce contamination.
- Cities with franchise systems have flexibility to tailor contract requirements to meet customer or city needs. It can result in greater efficiency and decreased disposal, saving customers and haulers money.
- Cities are moving away from non-exclusive franchising and open permit systems. Multiple haulers exacerbate the negative environmental impact of trucks. And the other systems lack accountability mechanisms, the report states.
- With industry consolidation, non-exclusive franchise and open permit systems prevents meaningful competition and puts it on price, rather than performance.
- Municipalities operating waste and recycling collection provide them with the capacity to ensure high standards through direct administration.
- Cities with privatized collection can achieve high standards through an exclusive franchise system. The most qualified bidder gets the contract, the report maintains.
- Rigorous waste system administration can ensure that cities comply with California laws on greenhouse gas reduction, 50-percent disposal reduction, mandatory commercial recycling and compost collection and the statewide recycling goal of 75 percent.