I’ve heard many wonks say we won’t be on track with a new energy economy in this country until we get competitive about it. Not just with other countries, but with each other.
We Americans, the theory goes, need to aim to be the best conservator of natural resources on our block instead of the biggest collectors of plasma TV screens.
Symbols of wealth and even excess carry great allure in this country, and so this will obviously require significant shifting and re-prioritizing.
San Francisco knows how to not waste an opportunity. In case you missed the news, the Golden Gate city recently surpassed it’s goal of diverting 75 percent of its trash from the landfill by 2010. It’s already at 77 percent trash diversion by the city’s last estimation.
The side of a Recology truck makes the point that "Recycling changes everything." In San Francisco, it has dramatically changed how much trash goes to waste. (Photo: Recology)
That very likely makes San Francisco the continuing leader among U.S. cities for trash diversion. San Jose, Fresno, Long Beach, New York City and Portland are close behind. According to an independent ranking, those cities were all diverting at least 60 percent of their waste in late 2007. San Francisco led the pack back then at 67 percent diversion.