“Garbage revolution”: the European method that New York will implement to clean its streets and avoid the invasion of rats

New York to adopt European method to clean up littered streets (Charlie Tribeau/AFP)

The mountains of black garbage bags that invade New York’s sidewalks They will soon become history for the feast of rats. The city began introducing a bin system to clean the streets and starve its army of rats.

It is a “garbage revolution”., according to local authorities. As of early March, more than 200,000 food businesses are required Deposit more than 3,000 million tonnes of waste in containers which they produce annually.

Residents have until 2026 to adapt to the container type, which Inspired by cities like Paris, Madrid or Buenos AiresThe city began implementing a pilot program in Harlem, northern Manhattan.

There are 150,000 parking spaces allocated for containers across the city, which could be dampened by the results of protests by residents who fear losing space for their cars.

“It’s a change,” he says. Ron James, a resident of Harlem. “Earlier, when I arrived at night, I often had to walk across the road to avoid rats on the pavement. “Now I rarely see them.”He told the agency AFP.

Mass litter causes rat infestation on New York streets (Charlie Tribeau/AFP)

In addition to seeing fewer rats, the Dominican Maxwell RodriguezWhat he’s most grateful for is that his community has stopped getting fines because “there’s no more litter on the street.”

The containers deter scavengers who open bags to remove cans or bottles to sell, he added.

The city of 8.5 million residents that never sleeps and the millions of tourists who visit it annually generates about 20 million tons of waste every day, more than half from businesses, according to the city council.

in a straight line, The debris will stretch for 43 kilometers8 kilometers more than the perimeter of Manhattan, authorities detailed.

Businesses have their own private collection systems, while about 10,000 members of the city’s sanitary department are in charge of residential, school and hospital waste.

In one of the most densely populated cities on the planet, especially Manhattan with over 1.7 million residents, most of whom live in high-rise buildings with no space between them. Its inhabitants – accustomed to use and throw away – seem a complex equation.

New York will begin using containers to dispose of the tons of waste produced every day (Charlie Tribeau/AFP)

The Columbia University professor admits that dealing with such a large amount of waste is a “huge problem.” Steven Cohen.

Practically, the only place to place containers is on the sidewalk, which takes away space for pedestrians, or on the road, complicating traffic. In some blocks, more than 25% of sidewalks will be occupied by containers, authorities predict.

The city will have to introduce trucks adapted to lift and empty containers. Till now collection is done manually, bag by bag.

These workers “deserve a solution that protects their bodies from injury,” the sanitation commissioner said, just as all New Yorkers “deserve a solution that cleans their streets.” Jessica Tisch.

Since the world’s largest landfill in Staten Island closed in 2001, all of the city’s waste has ended up in a network of waste-to-energy facilities and in landfills hundreds of miles away in other states, such as North Carolina. South.

“No one wants to live near a waste processing station”Cohen justified.

The use of containers was welcomed by some citizens, but criticized by others (Charlie Tribeau/AFP)

Meanwhile, this expert on environmental sustainability policies hopes for a paradigm shift to turn waste into a source of energy with the help of “new mining” and artificial intelligence. So far “less than 10%” is recycled, he noted.

With less than 3% of organic waste being recycled, the city has started implementing a plan to equip it with special compost containers, which will become mandatory from next year.

“All food waste will be recycled, either to compost or to an anaerobic digester, which converts it into methane or nitrogen fertilizer,” Cohen said.

“It takes time for people to learn other ways of doing things”, but even if it’s late, “I think it will be achieved,” he said optimistically. And he concluded: “Any change with a city of this size, it will take many years before it is really seen.”

(With information from AFP)

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