An overflowing garbage can in Boston. PHOTO BY NICOLAUS CZARNECKI/METRO
A group dedicated to getting Boston's waste down to zero over the next 26 years is pleading with the city: "Don't' waste this opportunity."
The Boston Zero Waste Task Force on Tuesday released a plan that aims to move Boston’s overall diversion recycling rate to 50 percent by 2020, 75 percent by 2030, and zero by 2040.
To get there, the city must focus on reducing, reusing, and of course, recycling, according to the group, which is urging the city to extend producer responsibility, implement a ban on single use plastic bags and styrofoam containers, ensure that recycling and food waste receptacles are available in all public spaces, and manufacture and remanufacture products locally.
The group also suggest that the city create and fund a reuse coordinator position to help develop and support local reuse businesses and expand donation programs.
"Boston has the opportunity to get into the spotlight nationally and create a world class program," said Alex Papali of the Boston Recycling Coalition and Clean Water Action.
The recommendations follow a series of meetings since June 2013. The task force represents small startups, large businesses and institutions, policy experts, environmental advocates, municipal agencies and both current and hopeful future workers.