Supervisors approve new Recology waste contract

July 26, 2011 7:51:11 PM PDT
There was a lot of trash talk at San Francisco City Hall Tuesday. The Board of Supervisors voted on a new waste dumping contract. Right now the trash is trucked to a landfill in Livermore owned by Waste Management. But that company's deal with the city expires in 2015.

The San Francisco Department of the Environment has chosen another company, Recology, to get the new 10 year contract. Recology plans to transport the trash by train to its own landfill in Yuba City. The Department of the Environment estimates that would save the city $100 million over the life of the contract.

"By using rail haul, we can take trucks off the road, save fuel and save ratepayers money," Recology spokesperson Adam Alberti said.

In the meantime, Yuba City residents and politicians are equally unhappy. They don't want San Francisco's garbage in their town -- more than 5 million tons over the next decade.

"It's meant for local use, the counties surrounding Yuba County; it doesn't need to take all of San Francisco's non-recyclable trash," opponent Irene Creps said.

Opponents are now pinning their hopes on a lawsuit filed by Waste Management accusing the city of having a sweetheart deal with Recology, which is already the only firm authorized to pick up the city's trash.

"What we're asking for is a level playing field," Waste Management spokesperson David Tucker said. "This has been a two year process and we submitted a far superior package."

Some San Francisco residents are also challenging Recology's lock on the city's garbage functions and may try to put the issue to the voters next June.


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