Opinion: Ditching green bags is not environmentally friendly
March 3, 2015
EDITOR'S NOTE: According to the town, if the proposal were to go through, new trucks would not need to be purchased, as the current Tahoe Truckee Sierra Disposal fleet is capable of picking up 96-gallon carts.
The town of Truckee's Green Bag system is a very successful program, but for what are some very misleading reasons, it faces ending.
First, the picture that rain with the Feb. 17 article in the Sierra Sun, "Truckee eyes trashing green bag waste collection for 96-gallon carts," is very misleading — it shows a street in Tahoe Donner with yard trash in green bags and a pile of limbs, stating it poses a "fire danger."
In Tahoe Donner, there is a street side program where home owners can get a tag from the Tahoe Donner Forestry department, and the department will send a chipper by to remove the slash — so there's no fire danger there. The green bags are picked up weekly by the landfill folks, so no fire danger there.
I have three, 33-gallon trash cans in my garage to separate all household trash. I do not have room for a 96-gallon container anywhere, especially four months of the year when it can't be used at all.
Around our community, there are houses that have more vertical drop in their driveways than some ski areas — how are owners, especially we seniors, going to get "heavier material," maybe 100 pounds, in containers wheeled down those driveways safely?
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Expensive modified trucks, with side pick-up ability, may be needed to pick up these containers. At whose cost? These trucks will have to then make two passes or more on each street in order to make the pick-up safely, doubling or more their carbon footprint, and then there would be a separate time for regular trash pick-up.
With the current weather conditions, I have been able to start clean-up of my defensible space, and put out and have my green bags picked up now. Under the proposed new system, I would have to pile my yard trash till April and then it would be removed one container at a time — or I can haul it to the dump. I can burn it with a permit on a burn day, which is not an option I would like, but one I would use.
Lastly, the claim to cut down on plastic bags at the landfill — the blue bag program is an absolute joke, and your separated "recycle material" blue bags accomplish nothing except a good feeling. They are more trash than Green Bags.
Go to the recycle hut at the landfill and watch what happens to them.
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