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Advocates Say NYCHA Recycling Barely Exists

Recycling Bins

Advocates Say NYCHA Recycling Barely Exists [Photo: epSos .de, flickr]

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New York City law requires landlords of buildings with four or more units to provide recycling services to all its residents, like bins for plastic bottles. But environmental advocates say the New York City Housing Authority, the city's largest landlord, has failed to do so.  
 
The Natural Resources Defense Counsil has sent a letter to NYCHA demanding reform. Eric Goldstein with NRDC says NYCHA's failure to provide residents with adequate services has resulted in thousands of tons of recyclables winding up in costly landfills each week.
 
"There are economic costs to taxpayers as a whole and of course adverse environmental costs when we bury recyclables in landfills," Goldstein said. "But most importantly, residents in NYCHA buildings are not getting the sanitation services they deserve."
 
Goldstein says the letter sent to NYCHA urges the agency to work closely with tenants to best determine recycling needs in various housing developments.
 
"The people who know how best to encourage participation in NYCHA buildings are the residents themselves," Goldstein said.
 
The letter asks NYCHA to respond within 60 days.  
 
A mayoral spokesperson said in a statement:
 
“The de Blasio administration has made clear that access to recycling for NYCHA residents has been totally inadequate for too long – which is why we are already tackling this issue head on. As announced last month in OneNYC, NYCHA - in partnership with DSNY - will install recycling bins at all developments, part of the Mayor’s ambitious but necessary goal of sending zero waste to landfill. NYCHA has already made clear that this will be implemented across developments by the end of 2016.”