Creating a Pathway to Zero Waste

For the last several years, the City has placed a high priority on increasing its efforts to improve recycling services for the residents of San Antonio. We know what we do today will increase the sustainability of our community and improve our environment for tomorrow.

In June 2010, City Council adopted the 10-Year Recycling and Resource Recovery Plan for the City of San Antonio. The strategic goals in the “Pathways to Zero Waste” Plan are to ensure that all single-family and multi-family residents have access to convenient recycling programs, to improve recycling opportunities for businesses and schools, and to recycle 60 percent of all material collected by the City’s Solid Waste Management Department.

Some of the steps we are taking to ensure that we reach the goal in the 10-year plan include establishing recycling services for all multi-family complexes, creating a use-reduction and recycling program for plastic shopping bags, and reducing waste and material consumption at City-wide celebrations and cultural events.

Multi-Family Recycling Services
To ensure that all residents of San Antonio have the opportunity to recycle, in December 2010 the City Council approved a recycling initiative for multi-family complexes (apartments, condos, and high rise housing buildings) that requires recycling services be provided for all tenants. Now, all San Antonio residents will have recycling services by April 2012. For more information about the program, visit http://www.sanantonio.gov/swmd/Recycling/MultiFamilyRecyclingProject.aspx or call the Multi-Family Hotline at 207-6410.

Plastic Shopping Bags Use Reduction & Recycling Program
I am excited to announce our new Plastic Shopping Bags Use Reduction & Recycling program. The City understands the impact that plastic shopping bags can have on our environment so we have teamed up will several partner businesses, like HEB, to launch an awareness and marketing campaign. The goal of the campaign is to increase the usage of reusable shopping bags, increase the amount of plastic bags being recycled, and decrease plastic bag litter in San Antonio. Be on the look out for bag swap events, recycling kiosks at area retailers, and other ideas on ways you can reduce your usage of plastic bags.

Fiesta Recycling “Don’t Trash Fiesta…No one likes a messy party”
This year, the City focused on increasing recycling participation at the 2011 Fiesta celebration. I am pleased to announce that we quadrupled the amount of recyclables collected this year. In 2010 we collected approximately 2.4 tons of recyclable material and in 2011 we collected 13.8 tons of recyclable material. We know we are just scratching the surface in this area and we are already working with the Fiesta Commission to develop plans for next year so we can recycle even more. Thanks San Antonio!

For more information about the City’s recycling efforts, visit http://www.sanantonio.gov/swmd/ .

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