Yellow, Turning Green



I support Councilmember Mike O’Brien and the effort to reduce unwanted phone books and the resultant bulky waste. And I want our effort – the first in the nation – to be both effective and successful. By working together this past week, we’ve achieved both of these goals with this revised legislation.

The ordinance will only be imposed upon those who distribute the greatest amount of unsolicited waste and it defines “distribution” as the unsolicited delivery of more than four tons of directories annually. Membership organizations delivering to their members are exempted.

A definition for the term “membership organization” has been added, which encompasses groups like the Greater Seattle Business Association and other neighborhood organizations. The legislation also defines “distributor,” which eliminates conjecture about the workers driving the delivery vans.

Our efforts this past week have made significant gains in community support, and with the ordinance, we’ll be relieving one of the larger burdens on the City’s solid waste disposal system.

It’s with a wry smile that I read today about Frito Lay’s decision to discontinue the biodegradable Sun Chips bag. After a short eighteen month lifespan, the snack food giant is killing off the bag over excessive noise complaints from consumers.

I’m not one to glean life lessons or take bold direction from anything edible, be it tea leaves or potato chips. But there’s a parallel here – it’s about making sure that when we craft something, be it legislation or something as mundane as a chip bag, it’s better to craft it right rather than craft it right now.

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