The City of Chicago has recentlyÂ made exciting progress towards becoming a more sustainable city byÂ updatingÂ and improving its composting ordinance. We think it is important to maintain this momentum, which is why AUA has recently signed onto theÂ Chicago Recycling Coalition‘s letter which demands that the Department of Streets and Sanitation enforce an Illinois state law that mandates that landscape waste be diverted from landfills.
Although the State of Illinois banned landscape waste from entering landfills 25 years ago (415 ILCS 5/22.22), the City of Chicago’s website shows that yard waste pickup isÂ almost non-existent.Â In contrast, large cities across the US, including New York, San Francisco, and Seattle, have been able to create efficient landscape waste disposalÂ programs.
We think Chicago should be next, so along with the Chicago Recycling Coaltion, AUA joins organizations such asÂ Angelic Organics Learning Center, theÂ Illinois Environmental Council, andÂ OpenlandsÂ in encouraging the CityÂ to develop and implement a systematic residential landscape wasteÂ programÂ thatÂ brings Chicago up to stateÂ standards.
As a high-carbon material, landscape waste can be a vital resource for compost, which is essential for Chicago’s farms and gardens. AUA urges the City to comply with the Illinois state law so we can prevent this abundant material from being wasted.
For the full text of the Chicago Recycyling Coalition’s letter, click here.
If you support the effort to keep landscape waste out of landfills, sign on the Chicago Recycling Coalition’s petitionÂ here.