Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Talking of Recycling

In October, HudsonValley360 reported that Columbia County intends to charge an annual fee to people who bring their recyclables to any one of the county transfer stations and will charge the City of Hudson and the Town of Greenport $20,000 each to accept recyclables collected by those municipalities: "Columbia County discusses recycle fee: reduced rate for seniors 65 or older."

At the last Common Council Economic Development Committee meeting, Alderman Rich Volo (Fourth Ward), who chairs the committee, reported on a recycling conference he had attended recently. The main takeaway from the conference seemed to be that single stream recycling is "causing a mess." Volo predicted that some sort of change is coming in the way the City of Hudson handles recycling and spoke of an education campaign to prepare for that change.

Meanwhile, the dumpster at the former John L. Edwards Primary School keeps getting filled with things bound for a landfill that should be recycled or put to good use.

Gossips recently received a report from a reader who did some dumpster diving at JLE about some of the things found there: many unopened packages of colored napkins, Styrofoam plates and bowls, table covers, various still useful children's toys, tools, and learning games.

There were also many recyclable cardboard boxes, plastic milk jugs, and paperback books.

Found too in the dumpster were a virtually unopened 26-pound box of white drawing paper, about 10 pounds of perfectly good colored paper, and at least a dozen partial reams of copy paper.

The reader who salvaged these things from the dumpster mused on the profligacy: "We all know that our planet and future generations are in peril, yet we continue to waste perfectly good things and spew carbon into the atmosphere as if there were no consequences. We all need a mind shift. How else will the young ones learn that throwing away perfectly good drawing paper is unacceptable if their school is doing it?" Gossips concurs.


  1. Hudson has loads of money to waste --- they tax and waste every day -- this is a perfect example.

  2. It would have been nice if the various Hudson Out-of-School Time organizations that support HCSD children had been invited to pick up supplies. We would have shown up! I did my fair share of dumpster diving as a NYCDOE teacher and librarian so I know you can find great stuff! Luckily the organization I work for did get some donations from the dumpsters from a concerned and active citizen. Thanks for highlighting this.

  3. 1. Several years ago I heard praise for single stream recycling from staff at the Columbia Land Conservancy. From a conservation standpoint I was told it was the preferred method.

    2. The garbage cans in the park at the County Courthouse have been removed.

  4. And then there are residents that casually dump trash in Rope Alley. Several months ago there were 3 abandoned sofas, removed by the DPW after contacting the mayors office. I suggested a new name...SOFA ALLEY

  5. In New Paltz, they took trash matters into their own hands, away from the County and private haulers, both whom are notorious for treating EVERYTHING as trash (that's where the money is!). Many years ago they opened a trash and recycling depot adjacent to the trash transfer station so that residents could easily recycle (not single stream!)and get rid of small amounts of trash, as well as a reuse building to drop off good stuff. Maybe Hudson should consider doing the same. Relying on the County to ensure cheap and efficient recycling is looking more and more tenuous. My sense is that all they really care about is handling as much garbage as possible.

  6. Charging people extra to recycle almost guarantees that fewer people will. Since economies of scale are central to to reuse business model, this proposal is entirely wrong headed, and is likely to make recycling in this county even more challenging.

  7. Looked inside this morning so much new stuff. Could had donated to Edith Casey or even second show

  8. We were never recycling to begin with. We've been selling our "recycling" to China, whereupon they just landfill it.

    Now China doesn't want to buy our garbage.

    The only efficiently recycled material is aluminum. Everything else should be landfilled, and efforts redirected to reducing production.