I am single, reside in Mill Valley, and have an almost zero-waste home. The amount of garbage I "dump" in a year can fit into a small brown bag. It doesn't seem fair that I am paying the same amount for garbage collection as my neighbors when I have no garbage, I only put out my recycling container every other week and the yard waste container once a month (because most of it goes into my compost). I have already contacted MVRS as well as the city of Mill Valley and have gotten the run around. I had considered cancelling my garbage collection and just taking my recycling and extra yard waste to the dump but I was told that every home has to have garbage collection. Do you have any suggestions as to what else I can do?
Only two thoughts, which aren't much help:
Do you have the smallest container you are allowed? Locally, we're charged by the size of container we use.
remember curbside recycling, and public trash p/u is [usually] subsidized by your payments.
But!! Totally agree conceptually with your complaint. YOU are paying for others' garbage p/u, particularly if you were willing to haul to recycling centers yourself.
Most importantly, maybe Bea can help since she's in your neck of the woods. Let us know, too, if anything changes. Could prove helpful for others as we approach ZW.
Would love to hear HOW, aside from composting, you've become ZW.
I don't even have a garbage container. Haven't had one since I first moved to Mill Valley about 2 1/2 years ago.
I grew up in an almost no-waste home so I've been practicing that most of my life. I take my own containers and bags to the store when buying bulk. I try to get my meat/poultry from local farms or I only buy it from the local butcher and save the paper to use over again for wrapping, etc. I buy my veggies from the farmer's market, trader joe's or whole foods and don't use the bags they offer. I try to walk to the store as much as possible. I do own a computer and a tv but limit their use. Because I live alone I only have one light on at a time (and that doesn't come on until after 7:30 during DST). Also, during the Spring, Summer and Fall I turn off the pilot light on my heater.
It's just so frusterating that I'm being penalized for being eco...I'm also frusterated with PG&E raising their rates for customers who use as little energy as possible but that's a whole other story.
That IS a bummer. How about contacting your councilman. Might be able to get a waver??? Especially since provable you're not putting out any garbage!!
Yep, as a fellow bay area'n, I'm less than pleased with PG&E's dumb rationalizations. Makes zero sense. I think they're trying to recoup losses from the San Bruno disaster in a typically backdoor fashion. --We have solar, so use VERY little grid power, though all this rain isn't helping. Can't seem to win, sometimes.
Thanks for the information on your waste reduction. Your butcher, in Mill Valley?? Local farms?? I used to know a great one here in the East Bay, but they closed up shop. WF, etc., really expensive. Sorry if nosey, but this is a nagging point for me.
Sending a letter to my councilpersons is next on my list. It's just so frusterating. Doesn't seem fair to pay $30 per month for a service I'm not using. I'm thinking of starting a petition to get better rates for those of us who don't use the garbage service.
I know WF is super expensive, but food is the one area where I don't mind paying the big bucks.
Let us know what you find out from the City Council (we are in Mill Valley too).
We were able to get a discount with MV Refuse (for the smaller size recycling / yard waste containers) - but like you, it is still crazy that we are paying almost as much for practically zero landfill waste (along with minimal recycling and yard waste).
I too was using the smaller bin for recycling but it was still only 8 dollars for 3 months. If I was just going to be charged for that use I wouldn't have any complaints.
I've tried (in vain) to contact any City Council member with no luck so today I called Mill Valley Refuse and cancelled my service...decided to just keep 4 10 gallon bins at home (for paper, plastic, metal, glass) and will make the trek up to the dump about once a month.
I'm consindering putting this matter onto the agenda at either the Council meeting on June 20th or in the latter part of July.
I did in fact cancel my garbage service...so far so good. I'm in the middle of looking at the City Ordinance right now and it seems that nothing has been changed since the 1970s. So my next task is to try to get a meeting with the City Council to try to have the Ordinance updated to reflect the decision of going green. Wish me luck cuz I'm sure I'll need it.
Yes, Good Luck! Would be nice if could rope in the ZWH family to speak/send something.
Sounds like clearly time for an ordinance update. Council probably not even aware of the issue.
--Definitely, good luck!
**So, no garbage, or are you just hauling periodically?? Wish I could convince DH to cancel <sigh> if we could....
I'd love to hear how this turns out. Our city has a mandate that requires garbage service even if nobody is living there (such as a vacation home). I have the smallest can/weekly pick-up, but that is still costing me $30 per month and I rarely use the service.
first, you can hire a company to remove your trash -- which means you 'rent' a trash can. we don't do this.
second, the city also provides pick up 'by the bag' -- so you pay for special bags at the grocery store. they come in one (big big big) size, and cost $2 a piece. We buy 10 at a time (currently), and it takes us quite a long time to fill them.
once we get our composting going, I suspect that we'll have a mason-jar of trash to go out each year. nearly all of our trash is compostable.