Bloomberg pitches citywide food-composting plan

Mayor Michael Bloomberg
Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s latest initiative would have New Yorkers sorting their food waste for composting. Credit: NYC Mayor’s Office

New Yorkers may no longer be able to throw their potato peels or egg shells in the trash can, as Mayor Michael Bloomberg has a plan in the works for a food-composting plan for all five boroughs.

Bloomberg first announced the plan in his State of the City address in February, as part of the city’s aim to divert 30 percent of the city’s waste from landfill by 2017.

“By recycling food waste, we can cut down on the total amount of trash we send to landfills and put it to better use as compost for community gardens or even energy,” said Deputy Mayor for Operations Cas Holloway. “This is an innovative program that’s already seen success in homes on Staten Island and our public schools, and we’re excited to expand it to more New Yorkers.”

The program is set to launch in all five boroughs this fall and reach more than 100,000 homes, averaging about 25,000 per borough, according to Bloomberg spokesman John McCarthy.

McCarthy said organic waste makes up about 35 percent of the city’s total waste, and totaled 1.2 million tons in 2012. Getting that waste to landfills cost the city $100 million.

Ultimately, the Bloomberg administration said, the composted waste could be converted to natural gas.

Earlier this year, organics recycling programs were launched in 90 public schools in Brooklyn and Manhattan. The diversion rate reportedly increased from 15 to 34 percent in Manhattan schools and 15 to 28 percent in Brooklyn schools.

Not everyone is thrilled with Bloomberg’s plan, however.

Jeff Stier, New York City-based director of the Risk Analysis Division of the National Center for Public Policy Research, a conservative thinktank, called the plan “a rotten idea for the Big Apple.”

“It doesn’t make sense to mandate that all New York residents save their rotting food,” Stier said. “Consider the increased risks from disease carrying vermin—a problem the city still hasn’t conquered—from all of the pre-compost material sitting around our dense living spaces, not going out with the trash each night.”

Aside from vermin, Stier is concerned about greenhouse gas emissions from additional trucks he says will have to be deployed to transport the composted waste.

 

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

City Council to discuss officer re-training

The New York City Council has set a Sept. 8 oversight hearing to learn more about the NYPD's review of police officer training in the…

Local

Brooklyn lawmakers: Let riders know sooner about bedbugs…

Two Brooklyn lawmakers are calling for more transparency when it comes to bedbugs and mass transit. Council Member Mark Treyger and Assembly Member Bill Colton…

Local

Jasper Johns aide admits stealing, selling artwork for…

A former assistant to renowned American contemporary artist Jasper Johns pleaded guilty on Wednesday to selling nearly two dozen of his works without Johns' knowledge.

National

Sister of accused Boston Marathon bombers arrested for…

The sister of the accused Boston Marathon bombers was arrested in New York City for threatening a woman over the phone, saying she could "put a bomb on you," police…

Movies

Interview: 'Life of Crime' star John Hawkes likes…

John Hawkes talks about playing a bumbling crook in "Life of Crime" and how he wanted his "Martha Marcy May Marlene" villain to be "bland."

Gossip

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie got married

The couple tied the knot in Chateau Miraval, France.

Television

'So You Think You Can Dance' recap: Season…

Season 11’s top four dancers gave their final performances before America’s Favorite Dancers are announced next week.

Going Out

Labor Day in NYC: Make the last weekend…

Soon, it’ll be time for wool accessories and knee-high boots. Even the Pumpkin Spice Latte has already arrived — but we still have one last…

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

NFL

Giants vs. Patriots: 3 things to watch

The Giants wrap up their extended preseason campaign Thursday night by playing host to the Patriots.

NFL

Fantasy football: What to take away from preseason

The third set of exhibition games, which went down last weekend, is the dress rehearsal week.

NFL

Mario Manningham on the bubble as Giants play…

Former Super Bowl hero Mario Manningham hopes his second go-around with Big Blue doesn’t end with Saturday’s final cut day.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…