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The past few years has seen various advancements at SPC with regard to recycling — we are better at complying with NYC requirements, we have dedicated a room to electronics recycling, and there is a periodic paper-shredding service available. These measures, however, don't address the inadequate nature of our ground-floor recycling slots or shareholder compliance, especially in light of NYC's recently added capacity (and forthcoming requirement) to recycle rigid plastics. The following email was sent to our Board of Directors with the aim of pushing for this long-standing issue to be addressed. Frank Durant replied to this message on the same day that it was sent; his replies are shown in-line, highlighted in red. 




April 24, 2014

 
 

It was recently announced that NYC is expanding its recycling program to include all rigid plastic. This is very significant. With proper recycling of metal, plastic and glass (and at some point, proper composting of food as well), the waste we produce will be reduced to a small fraction of what it is.

Unfortunately, recycling in our community does not work very well. Many residents, seniors in particular, do not recycle. In spite of communication by the city, conversations I have had with some seniors indicate that they don't even know how or what to recycle. Down at the bins, people often dump material that is not recyclable, that is improperly mixed, that hasn't been cleaned, or that contains trash. The bins themselves don't accommodate large batches of recyclable material, and they certainly can't accommodate all manner of newly recyclable plastic containers that are already starting to receive.

I propose that we start dealing with this in the following ways:

  1. Put recycling info decals on the wall over the trash-chutes. Also include information about where recyclables should be brought, and details on paper-shredding/electronics recycling.

    FD: The decals are already on order and will be delivered shortly.

  2. Add recycling posters in the recycling area. Include a clear indication of (a) what to put where, (b) cleanliness and sorting requirements, (c) what not to leave, and (d) where to bring large items. Also note the electronics recycling location and paper-shredding schedules.

    FD: Signage will be placed in these areas after the first sample is completed and approved to be done in all areas by the Board.

  3. Make the recycling area bigger - perhaps break down part of the wall and let people dump recyclables into the bin directly instead of through a narrow slot.

    FD: We are working to increase and recess the recycling areas and the initial sample will be ready prior to the next board meeting.

  4. Have an annual recycling briefing (perhaps as part of a larger "green SPC" event) - at which we can cite some stats about how much we are recycling over the previous year, and present samples of what to recycle, what not to recycle and how.

    FD: We have had recycling seminars in the past that were given by the City and more frequent ones should take place to educate the residents, you will shortly see a memo, thank you for the reminder.


  5. If permissible by law, consider collection bins in the stairwells every other floor for weekly pickup, with posters above those bins.

    FD: We cannot place recycling bins in the stairwells.

NOTE: Free posters and decals can be ordered from http://www.nyc.gov/html/dsny/html/contact/requests_decal.shtml .





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