- Salt Lake City Council is gathering feedback on an ordinance that would require recycling at large condo complexes, apartments, and businesses — which currently only recycle 10% to 15% of waste. The Desert news said it would be the first law of its kind in Utah.
- Fines would be assessed if a complex building or business doesn't comply with the recycling rules. Exemptions to the ordinance would only be made if the property already diverts 50% of its waste through other means — such as composting — or if the waste contains little recyclable material.
- Residents can attend a public hearing on Nov. 17 to share opinions on the mandate. A vote is anticipated for December.
As a whole, Salt Lake City is a sustainable city, with an overall diversion rate of 40% — higher than the national average recycling rate of 33%. This mandate, however, can push the city even further in improving recycling convenience.
"This has huge potential to make an impact and create a way to get everybody involved in sustainability issues," said Debby Lyons, the city's sustainability program director, to the Deseret News. "Recycling is probably one of the easiest ways that people can contribute in a positive way to the environment."
Similar large cities are implementing recycling mandates at apartment complexes to increase recycling participation city-wide. In Austin, TX, apartment complexes must comply with the city's recycling ordinance by October 2016.