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Articles from 2005 In September

SWANA releases online report addressing hurricane debris management

After the devastation caused by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), Silver Spring, Md., has issued a report on how to handle waste removal necessitated by the natural disasters. The report, titled “Hurricane Katrina Disaster Debris Management: Lessons Learned from State and Local Governments,” was put together at the request of the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and is a compilation of methods to manage various environmental concerns such as household hazardous waste and electronic and automobile waste.

For additional information and to access the report, visit www.swana.org.

Mack Trucks launches new Web site link for Spanish-speaking customers

Mack Trucks Inc., Allentown, Pa., is now able to reach its Spanish-speaking customer base online with the creation of a Spanish-language page on the company’s Web site. The page provides information about Mack’s highway and vocational products. Tom Kelly, vice president of marketing for the company, says that the addition of the new link on the Web site enables the firm to reach out to those customers whose primary language is Spanish and who are entering the trucking industry.

For additional information, visit www.macktrucks.com.

Environmental company contributes $1 million to aid Katrina victims

Veolia Environment, a company based in France that provides water management, wastewater, energy and transportation services to industrial and municipal customers around the world, is teaming up with its North American subsidiaries to donate $1 million to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. The company plans to contribute $500,000 to the American Red Cross and to the Bush-Clinton Katrina Relief Fund to assist victims in the communities that it serves. In addition to financial contributions, Veolia Environment has donated much-needed items such as bottled water, food and personal goods to hurricane victims.

The environmental services company also plans to aid its employees affected by Katrina through financial and humanitarian contributions.

San Diego apartment and condo communities lack recycling options

Residents of San Diego apartment complexes and condominiums are finding limited access to recycling bins in their communities, which property owners blame on cost, lack of space and resident turnover. In the Southern California city, where more than half of the county’s multi-unit sites are located, only about 10 percent offer recycling options, making California’s recycling goal of 50 percent difficult to attain. Currently, officials are considering a proposed state law that would create ordinances promoting recycling in multi-unit sites.

In the early 1990s, the region’s cities adopted recycling ordinances, requiring apartment and condominium property owners to provide recycling options for their residents. According to the state waste management board, many cities have not enforced the ordinances because of understaffing. Experts say that interest in recycling programs has skyrocketed in an effort to abide by state law.

Old landfill undergoes $26 million conversion project

After 10 years of cleanup work, the Yeoman Creek landfill, located in the suburban Chicago town of Waukegan, is nearing the end of its conversion into a public park space. The $26 million project comes 20 years after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) noticed hazardous chemicals from the landfill leaking into nearby Yeoman Creek. The landfill, which had been the town’s main disposal site since 1958 and closed in 1969, has endured decades-long criticism concerning the site’s lack of precautionary measures with regard to the environment.

The landfill cleanup includes a cover for landfill materials and a system to eliminate methane gas buildup. With the conversion project, which began in February 2002, nearly complete, officials say the public can schedule interviews with the EPA to discuss how the land should be used. Although officials indicate that plans for the 70-acre site are not yet final, an open-space area will be included.

City council rejects commercial hauler ordinance

The Burlington, Iowa, City Council recently shot down a proposed ordinance that would have prevented commercial garbage haulers from disposing of city-generated waste in outside landfills. According to the proposed ordinance, all solid waste originating within the city should be disposed of only at the Des Moines County Regional Solid Waste Commission landfill. The council’s decision comes after two Iowa residents presented the group with a 1994 U.S. Supreme Court case which states that it is unlawful for a city to tell commercial garbage haulers where to dispose of trash.

The ordinance originated in an attempt to include commercial garbage haulers within state law. Currently, municipal landfills are required by state law only to accept trash generated within the city. However, the law does not refer to commercial haulers.

Dell Offering Free Computer Recycling Events

Round Rock, Texas – Dell has begun a series of one-day free computer recycling events, starting with the United Kingdom on Sept. 17. Other cities to be visited include Nashville, Tenn., Munich, Germany, and Sydney, Australia. The tour, which is in conjunction with the company’s annual Global Community Involvement Month, ends Nov.12 in Oklahoma City.

Consumers can bring any brand computer, monitor, printer or other computer equipment to the events to be recycled. Through Dell’s partnership with the National Cristina Foundation, people also have the option of donating used computer equipment to charity.

Through 50 community recycling events, Dell has recycled more than 2,500 tons of computer equipment during the last two years.

WASTECON to Host Recycling Roundtable

Silver Spring, Md. – The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) will host a recycling roundtable discussion at WASTECON in Austin, Texas, on Sept. 27 at 11:30 a.m. Panel members will include Malcolm Woolf, minority counsel to Senator Jeffords on the Environmental and Public Works Committee, and Matt Hale, director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Solid Waste.

The session, titled “Influencing Recycling at the National Level: An Economic Development Project,” aims to build upon and discuss efforts such as SWANA’s Recycling Incentives Alliance and EPA’s stakeholder meetings. Visit www.swana.org for more information.

SWANA to Offer Hurricane Debris Session at WASTECON

Silver Spring, Md. – The Solid Waste Association of North American (SWANA) will hold a session about disaster debris management at WASTECON in Austin, Texas, on Sept, 28. The 75-minute session, titled Disaster Debris Management Technical Session, starts at 8 a.m. Presenters will discuss firt-hand experiences in dealing with disaster preparation and cleanup, including case studies from Hurricanes Charlie, Francis, Jean and Ivan.

The session is being offered free to state and local government employees. For more information, visit www.wastecon.org.