Streams

 

Trash

BackStory

Round and Round We Go

Friday, May 01, 2015

With the American History Guys

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WNYC News

NYC Businesses Only Recycle a Fourth of Their Waste: Report

Monday, April 20, 2015

One environmental lawyer says the city's commercial recycling rate is at the "back of the pack" compared to other rates nationally.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Waste an Hour (or Two) With Us

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The growing food waste epidemic. The new pop-up restaurant that uses food scraps. The Treasures in the Trash Museum. Diving for dinner. Andy Summers, lead guitarist for The Police.

The Takeaway

The Moon Is a Galactic Garbage Can

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

In total, the moon hosts more than 400,000 pounds of man-made material. But is this trash a problem, or just the cost of doing space travel?

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WNYC News

This City Councilman Wants to Charge For Un-Recycled Trash

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The head of the New York City Council's sanitation committee says we should be paying for refuse we don't recycle.

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PRI's The World

To see life's oddities, you have to vist an odd place — a museum in an elevator shaft

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Mmuseumm, the smallest museum in New York, could probably fit in your bathroom — and its contents might not look much different from the stuff in your cabinets. That's because this museum is all about everyday stuff from around the world and, more importantly, the story behind the stuff.

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The Takeaway

Rubbish: Uncovering the Truth About Trash

Thursday, May 08, 2014

What we throw away, where we toss it, and what gets recycled has been a concern for decades. As more and more Americans are living closer together in urban areas, the trash problem has become even bigger.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Turning Trash into Energy

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Mike Hart, President and CEO of Sierra Energy, will talk about their FastOx Pathfinder, a machine that turns common trash into useable energy. While still in its infant stages of development, this waste-to-energy system was recently bought by the U.S. Department of Defense in the hopes of reducing oil consumption. He’ll also discuss the ongoing national hunt to make alternative fuels like Ethanol from trash in an environmentally and economically sound way.

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Transportation Nation

How to Clean Subway Stations: Remove Trash Cans

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The NY MTA will expand a rodent-fighting pilot program to eight new subway stations after initial success from removing trash cans on platforms.

The transit agency removes 40 tons of garbage every day (about 14,000 tons annually). Subway platform trash cans are one juicy part of that. The part that is most attractive to crawling critters. The MTA runs nighttime trains that collect filled trash bags from stations, but while as many as 75 garbage bags wait for pick up platforms, the rats feast.

So to remove the rodent magnets, the MTA has been testing a plan since October to simply remove the platform trash cans all together and replace them with signage asking riders to take their waste with them. Pack it in, pack it out, like camping. And it works. Even if riders complain about it, it reduces litter ... and now the MTA is saying, rodents too.

At the two stations where the pilot has been running since last fall, trash bag usage fell by a half to two-thirds. "Cleanliness improved and there was no increase in track fires," the MTA said in a statement.

No ten stations will get the no-trash can treatment. MTA:

In order to get a better understanding of the impact of removing trash cans from stations, NYC Transit will begin a larger pilot for six months at eight more stations – two in each of the Bronx, Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens – to determine if this program should continue.  The locations were chosen to represent average-sized stations both elevated and underground.  Notices were posted in all affected stations beginning Monday, August 20.  The eight additional stations are:

Bronx:

  • 238th Street 1 station
  • East 143rd Street 6 station

Manhattan:

  • 57th Street F station
  • Rector Street 1 station

Brooklyn:

  • 7th Avenue FG station
  • Brighton Beach Q station

Queens:

  • 111th Street A station
  • 65th Street MR station

 

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The Takeaway

Rio de Janeiro Closes One of the World's Largest Garbage Dumps

Friday, June 08, 2012

Rio De Janaeiro had finally closed the infamous Jardim Gramacho garbage dump. Lucy Walker, director of the Oscar-nominated documentary "Waste Land," weighs the environment good against the economic consequences for the people who once worked there. 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Curbing Our Waste

Monday, April 30, 2012

Looking for ways to cut back the amount of garbage you're producing? We have some helpful hints!

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Transportation Nation

People DO Litter Less Without Subway Trash Cans. But They're Not Happy About It

Thursday, March 01, 2012

(photo by Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

A counter-intuitive subway garbage experiment is yielding mixed results

Five months ago the city removed trash cans at two stations -- the Main Street/Flushing #7 station in Queens and the West 8th Street N/R in Greenwich Village -- to see if straphangers would actually litter less. Thomas Prendergast, the president of New York City Transit, said it's working -- but riders don't like it.

"So we haven't been able to change their minds from a perceptional standpoint," he said, "but from a behavioral standpoint, we have."

But there is one group who are giving the experiment a thumbs-up. "The cleaners that work the stations like it," he said, "because they're carrying less trash out."

Prendergast added that while there a lot of people who think "it's backwards," the experiment will continue for now.

He was speaking at a transportation forum held Thursday morning at the law firm of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan.

A spokesperson for the MTA said the city hasn't made any decisions about whether to end the program or expand it to other stations.

 

 

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The Brian Lehrer Show

The Trash Train

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Jim O'Grady, WNYC's transit reporter, explains the latest MTA plan to fight litter by removing trash barrels from subway platforms.

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Transportation Nation

Should You Treat a Subway Platform Like Yosemite?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

 

(photo by Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

TN's Jim O'Grady was on WNYC's Brian Lehrer Show this morning to talk about the NY MTA's attempt to reduce trash in the subway. One experiment: remove trash cans to encourage a sort of 'pack it in, pack it out' mindset.  Or, as Jim put it:  "Think of your subway platform as Yosemite, that must not be despoiled."

Listen to the interview below.

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WNYC News

City Trash Removal Resumes

Sunday, January 02, 2011

For the first time in a week, city sanitation department crews are out picking up garbage instead of plowing snow.

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WNYC News

Picking Up After Your Picnic

Friday, July 23, 2010

Prospect Park has over eight million visitors a year. On Monday mornings, there is often lots of trash left behind. Garry Osgood decided to do something about it.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Mess or Blessing?

Monday, March 23, 2009

photo by Jill Zimmerman

photo by Jill Zimmerman

One of our recent contributors to the Uncommon Economic Indicators loves her view (see photo).

She writes, ' walking around my [Williamsburg] neighborhood, I see tons of empty lots that were formerly old factories and apartment ...

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Studio 360

Trashed

Saturday, October 04, 2003

Have you ever been rooting around in some drawer in your house and come across an old short story from college? Or a poem you wrote in high school? Chances are, that whether you thought the thing was terrific or embarrassingly bad, you didn't throw it out. Artist

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Studio 360

Junk Sculptor

Saturday, October 04, 2003

The sculptor and performance artist Ned Schaper has been working with found objects for the last twenty years. He says his kinetic junk-sculptures come together by accident. Produced by Julia Barton.

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Studio 360

Landfill Artist

Saturday, October 04, 2003

Over thirty years ago, New York artist Mierle Laderman Ukeles decided to find out what happened to her own garbage, and she never turned back. Produced by Mallory Kasdan.

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