The Seattle City Council this afternoon unanimously adopted a zero waste strategy that seeks to increase recycling, reduce trash and upgrade Seattle’s transfer stations. The move put to an end years of discussions on the subject, which began as a debate over where to build a new transfer station. (The City of Seattle trains its trash daily to a dump outside Arlington, Ore.)
In addition to saying "yes" to zero waste (really a misnomer because the closest they hope to get is 72 percent recycling), the council vote officially shuts the door on the proposal to build the new trash compaction and transfer station on the south end of Georgetown-- an unpopular idea with residents who made zero waste their rallying cry.
Council member Richard Conlin, who shepherded the idea through the political minefield (read mayor's office), said the strategy gives the city a real shot at shortening that mile-long trash train to Oregon. Council member Sally Clark called the vote a victory not only for Georgetown, but for every neighborhood in the city.
In a nod to the folks who turned out in droves to the public hearings toting hundreds of plastic grocery bags and wearing fanciful hats made from Styrofoam, the plan includes a promise for recommendations on whether to ban or tax plastic bags and the food containers by December.