Category: Latest News

Pay-as-You-Throw Around the World

Pay-as-you-throw isn’t just a U.S. phenomenon. Countries around the world–especially in Asia and Europe–also use the system to cut waste and boost recycling. A few recent news stories illustrate the trend. Taiwan: A feature story in the Wall Street Journal calls the small island nation “an international poster child for recycling,” painting a picture of…

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The Value of Waste Reduction, or, What the New York Times Got Wrong About Recycling

If you care about solid waste reduction, by now you’ve probably read John Tierney’s New York Times opinion piece denigrating the value of recycling. It’s a long piece, but in a nutshell, Tierney’s two-fold argument is this: There’s no point in recycling unless it makes economic sense—and it doesn’t make economic sense. He’s missing the…

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With Pay-as-You-Throw, Good Policy Is Good Politics

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: pay-as-you-throw isn’t just good policy; it’s also good politics. That’s been true for a while, and the news yesterday out of Waterville, Maine, is just more evidence for it. In a city-wide referendum, Waterville residents voted by an overwhelming two-to-one margin to continue PAYT. It’s not hard to see why. Pay-as-you-throw…

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B Corps and Best for the Environment

Being a certified B Corp means a lot to us at WasteZero, so we’re especially pleased that for the second year running, we’ve been named to the nonprofit B Lab’s “Best for the Environment” list–an honor reserved for just 116 companies in the top 10% of certified B Corps for environmental impact. WasteZero’s environmental score of 43 puts…

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Pay-as-You-Throw, and Don’t Look Back

It’s Town Meeting Season in New England, when people fill up high school gyms and libraries to vote on things like town budgets, school funding, road repairs… and, sometimes, pay-as-you-throw. Most years, people in at least a few towns in the region find a way to get PAYT on the ballot. That’s what happened in Hopkinton, N.H.,…

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Cape Cod’s Oldest Pay-as-You-Throw Program, in Cape Cod’s Oldest Town

For a town that was founded almost 400 years ago, there’s a lot that’s innovative about Sandwich, Mass. It was the first town on Cape Cod—and it was the first Cape Cod community to adopt pay-as-you-throw, back in July of 2011. With three years under their belt now, Sandwich has the numbers to show what…

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Eight Is Great for Pay-as-You-Throw in Ashland, Mass.

This month marks eight years of pay-as-you-throw in the Massachusetts town of Ashland, and what an eight years it’s been: solid waste is way down, recycling is way up, and the town has saved almost a million dollars. Ashland, a town of 16,500, sits about 20 miles west of Boston. They began using their orange-bag…

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Six Great Months of Pay-as-You-Throw in Wellfleet, Mass.

The numbers are in for the Cape Cod town of Wellfleet, Mass., which has just marked six months of pay-as-you-throw—and they’re great. In just a half a year with PAYT, Wellfleet has cut its residential waste tonnage by 40%. Between December 2013, when the program began, and May 2014, Wellfleetians threw away 309 tons of trash—a…

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Pay-as-You-Throw Is Coming to Fall River, Mass.

Fall River, Mass., is now set to implement the pay-as-you-throw program proposed by Mayor Will Flanagan. The program will kick off on Aug. 4. Fall River, a diverse city of almost 90,000 in southeastern Massachusetts, had been facing a dramatic budget shortfall, with millions of dollars in lost revenue due to the closure of their landfill, expiration…

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Pay-as-You-Throw and Popular Opinion: A Winning Combination

We’ve known for a long time that people like pay-as-you-throw. How could we not? We’ve been at this for a long time—more than twenty years—and we’ve worked with hundreds of cities and towns. And along the way we’ve had the opportunity to talk with lots of people, to learn about what drives them and what…

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