Philadelphia Sets 2035 Zero Waste Goal, Creates Zero Waste & Litter Cabinet
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney Tuesday signed an Executive Order creating the Zero Waste and Litter Cabinet, charged with creating a comprehensive plan for waste reduction and litter prevention.
“A clean Philadelphia is a vibrant and healthy Philadelphia,” said the Mayor. “With this Executive Order, I’m assembling a group of experts from within and outside of government to identify more effective ways to increase our waste diversion rate and tackle the long-standing problems of litter and cleanliness that many of our neighborhoods have long struggled with.”
The Zero Waste and Litter Cabinet is charged with developing an action plan to achieve the following objectives:
-- Setting a “zero waste” goal for Philadelphia to reduce the amount of material in the waste stream and increase the percentage of waste diverted from conventional landfills and incinerators – with a long-term goal of diverting almost all waste from conventional landfills and incinerators by 2035. Many other major U.S. cities, such as New York and Los Angeles, have recently adopted similar “zero waste” goals and Philadelphia is proud to join them.
-- Prevent and better manage litter and illegal dumping in the right-of-way and other public spaces in neighborhoods across the city.
-- Improve education, through outreach and partnerships with public and private stakeholder organizations, on preventing and managing litter and working toward a long-term “zero waste” goal.
-- Implementing measurable standards to demonstrate progress toward the goals of a greener and cleaner city through an enhanced “litter index.”
-- Engage citizens and strengthen communities to better empower them to keep their neighborhoods clean, litter-free, and environmentally sustainable.
-- Build strategic partnerships with government agencies, private businesses, community organizations, and other stakeholders to assist the Managing Director’s Office in implementing the action plan.
“Over the years, I’ve seen important but piecemeal efforts toward reducing waste and litter in Philadelphia,” said Managing Director Michael DiBerardinis. “I’m convinced that a comprehensive, interdepartmental approach that tackles all aspects of the issues – and coordinates the responses across departments, in cooperation with City Council and community members– is the only way to achieve the aspirational goals of a zero waste, litter free City – and this cabinet can help accomplish those objectives.”
“Illegal dumping in Philadelphia, as with so many other beautiful places in Pennsylvania, cannot be addressed by cleanup or surveillance alone,” said Shannon Reiter, President of Keep PA Beautiful. “We applaud Mayor Kenney for creating the Zero Waste and Litter Cabinet and stand ready to assist him and our local affiliate, Keep Philadelphia Beautiful as they work together to keep Philadelphia beautiful.”
“Illegal dumping in Philadelphia costs taxpayers millions of dollars a year, drives down property values, and threatens public health,” added Reiter. “It will take a multi-faceted, systematic approach including training and education, convenient and affordable access for trash disposal and recycling, enforcement and other types of deterrents, and of course cleanup.”
The Cabinet, co-chaired by the Managing Director and Deputy Managing Director for Transportation and Infrastructure, will be composed of 16 members, including representatives from the Commerce Department, Department of Planning and Development, the President of City Council, the School District of Philadelphia, the Office of the District Attorney, SEPTA, and PennDOT.
Representatives of the business community and nonprofit organizations will also be included in the Cabinet.
Additionally, leaders from City operating departments will extensively advise, assist, and support the Cabinet throughout its work. Click Here for a list of members.
The Zero Waste and Litter Cabinet is expected to deliver its plan to the Mayor in six months. Beyond that, it will prepare and publish annual reports on its progress.
PlanPhilly.com reported Wednesday this new initiative is part of the new Philadelphia Greenworks Pla were the City is already taking on cross-departmental initiatives like litter coordination and the litter index, a street-by-street assessment action to reduce waste.
In addition, different city agencies are also working separately on efforts to reduce waste through recycling, composting, sustainable procurement, and education.
For more information on programs, initiatives and special events, visit the Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful website. Click Here to sign up for regular updates from KPB, Like them on Facebook, Follow on Twitter, Discover them on Pinterest and visit their YouTube Channel.
[Posted Dec. 21, 2016]
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