City of Seattle Legislative Information Service

Information retrieved on January 20, 2017 6:15 PM

Resolution Number: 30990

A RESOLUTION establishing new recycling goals for the City of Seattle and providing direction on waste-reduction programs and solid waste facilities.

Status: Adopted
Date adopted by Full Council: July 16, 2007
Note: Zero Waste Strategy

Vote: 9-0

Date introduced/referred to committee: June 25, 2007
Committee: Environment, Emergency Management and Utilities
Sponsor: CONLIN
Committee Recommendation:
Date of Committee Recommendation:
Committee Vote:


Fiscal Note: Fiscal Note to Resolution 30990

Electronic Copy: PDF scan of Resolution No. 30990


A RESOLUTION establishing new recycling goals for the City of Seattle and providing direction on waste-reduction programs and solid waste facilities .

WHEREAS, Resolution 27871 adopted the City of Seattle’s ("City&rsquo ;s") 1988 Integrated Solid Waste Management Plan which established a goal of recycling 60% of the waste produced within the city; and

WHEREAS, the City’s 1998 and 2004 Solid Waste Plans, adopted by Reso lution 29805 and 30750, respectively, reaffirmed the 60% recycling goal; and

WHEREAS, the substantial recycling progress to date has been slower than e xpected causing the timeframe for reaching the 60% recycling goal to be in crementally lengthened from 1998 to 2010; and

WHEREAS, the City Council and Mayor seek to further reduce disposed waste so that the City can more quickly meet and exceed its 60% recycling goal a nd build more efficient waste facilities; and

WHEREAS, to address future recycling and waste disposal needs, the City Co uncil and Mayor adopted Resolution 30431 directing Seattle Public Utilitie s ("SPU") to prepare a Solid Waste Facilities Master Plan ("Master Plan"); and

WHEREAS, the Master Plan, completed in 2004, recommended rebuilding the Ci ty’s two transfer stations and constructing a new intermodal facilit y in south Seattle; and

WHEREAS, to further validate the City’s waste-reduction and facility approaches, the City Council and Mayor requested that an independent cons ultant conduct a review of SPU’s recycling efforts and facilities pr oposals. That review resulted in the April 2007 Seattle Solid Waste Recycling, Waste Reduction, and Faci lities Opportunities report ("Zero-Waste Report"), which identified new re cycling actions and facility efficiencies through which the City might rea ch 72% recycling by 2025; and

WHEREAS, the City Council and Mayor seek to expand recycling and move forw ard with facility upgrades by applying zero-waste principles to the City&r squo;s management of solid waste; NOW, THEREFORE,


Section 1. Goals. The City establishes the following goals for recycling a nd waste reduction.

A. The City will recycle 60% of the waste produced within the city by 2012 , and 70% of the waste produced within the city by 2025.

B. The City will not dispose of any more total solid waste in future years than went to the landfill in 2006 (438,000 tons of municipal solid waste ("MSW".

C. For the next five years, the City will reduce the amount of solid waste disposed by at least 1% per year (2008-2012).

D. Future waste-reduction goals for the period 2013-2028 (the term of the long-haul disposal contract) will be set based on the experience of the fi rst five years, with the aspiration of achieving a steady reduction in the amount of waste disposed each year.

Section 2. Waste-Reduction Strategies. The action strategies adopted to ac hieve City goals shall apply zero-waste principles. Zero-waste principles entail managing resources instead of waste; conserving natural resources t hrough waste prevention and recycling; turning discarded resources into jobs and new products instead of trash; promoting products and materials that are durable and recyclable ; and discouraging products and materials that can only become trash after their use. Action strategies should include elements that:

A. Actively encourage and support a system where producers minimize waste during product design and take responsibility for the reuse or recycling o f used products;

B. Promote the highest and best use of recycled materials;

C. Minimize the environmental impacts of disposed waste; and

D. Implement actions in a sequence that: 1) starts by simultaneously offer ing any new recycling service for customers to use on a voluntary basis, i mplementing incentives to encourage participation, and pursuing product st ewardship approaches to avoid waste or remove waste from the City waste stream and 2) as a second step c onsider prohibiting disposal of the targeted materials as garbage in order to ensure full participation of all customers.

Section 3. Waste-Reduction Actions. SPU shall propose specific waste-reduc tion actions, consistent with the strategies described above, to achieve C ity recycling goals as part of future rate proposals, budgets, and solid w aste plan updates. The proposed rates and budgets for 2008, 2009, and 2010 shall include, at minimum, the actions in Attachment A. Additional actions (similar to those in the Zero- Waste Report) shall be proposed as part of future rates, budgets, and soli d waste plans as needed to meet City goals.

Section 4. Facility Actions. To help reach City waste-reduction goals and efficiently manage current and future solid waste, the following actions s hall be taken to upgrade City facilities.

A. The South and North Recycling and Disposal Stations ("SRDS" and "NRDS") will be designed to accommodate expanded recycling, a retail re-use facil ity, and self-haul waste and collection trucks in roughly the same proport ions that they now experience, but with design elements for self-haul tonnages to be below current levels . While there may continue to be, on an operational basis, some use of pri vate transfer stations, NRDS and SRDS will be designed to handle the City& rsquo;s MSW.

B. To the extent that the recycling and disposal stations experience decre ases in total tonnages of waste disposed, the City will explore the possib ility of adding additional waste-reduction and recycling programs, and the stations will be designed to facilitate conversion of space dedicated to disposal to waste reduction an d recycling.

C. The City will purchase additional properties for the development of the new SRDS.

Section 5. Reporting. SPU will report to Council by July 1 of each year on the previous year’s progress toward recycling goals, as well as fur ther steps to be taken to meet goals in the current and upcoming years. Ea ch annual report shall contain the comments of the Solid Waste Advisory Committee.

Adopted by the City Council the ____ day of _________, 2007, and signed by me in open session in authentication of its adoption this _____ day of __ ________, 2007.


President __________of the City Council



Gregory J. Nickels, Mayor

Filed by me this ____ day of _________, 2007.


City Clerk


Attachment A: Waste-Reduction Actions

Meg Moorehead/mm

LEG Zero_resoV4a.doc

July 3, 2007

Version #4a




The following actions shall be implemented to achieve waste-reduction goal s. The first years of implementation are shown in parentheses.


A. All City agencies will meet or exceed all requirements for waste reduct ion and recycling placed on commercial and residential customers (2007).

B. The City will institute a $100,000 annual Waste Reduction/Recycling Mat ching Fund for community recycling/waste reduction initiatives (2008).

C. SPU will initiate a market development effort for difficult to recycle materials such as asphalt roofing, drywall, and tires (2008).

D. The City’s Solid Waste Advisory Committee (SWAC) will be consulte d on design and implementation strategies for new programs, and the City s hall consult with other appropriate stakeholders as needed to provide inpu t into the analysis of actions for implementation in 2008 or beyond. Additional members may be added to t he SWAC or ad hoc advisory groups may be formed to perform more detailed w ork on specific action strategies if this would be helpful in meeting the increased work load for the SWAC (2008 and beyond).

E. Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) will expand inspection and enforcement a ctions for the present ban on disposal of recyclables (2009-2011).

F. SPU will mandate that all collection trucks use a ultra-low sulfur dies el/biodiesel mixture or compressed natural gas to reduce both airborne par ticulates and green house gas emissions (2009).

G. SPU will institute performance-based contracting for collection/disposa l companies through 2009 collection contracts based on achieving waste-red uction goals (instead of amount of waste disposed) (2009).

H. SPU will increase opportunities for waste reduction audits and waste re duction/recycling education to commercial customers (2009).

I. SPU will increase opportunities for waste reduction audits and waste re duction/recycling education to residential and multi-family customers. (20 09).

J. The City will expand recycling services available at large events and p arks (2010).

K. The City will explore ways to cooperate with other governments in Centr al Puget Sound to coordinate waste reduction, product stewardship, and oth er efforts across jurisdictions (2008).


A. The City will continue to build a commercial organics program through 2 007 and beyond by working with customers and collection companies to provi de incentives and design programs to facilitate, promote, and increase the cost-effectiveness of commercial organics collections. Among the incentives to be evaluated will be designing rates to encourage organics recycling, including decreasing the perunit organics charge as quantities of organics increase (2007).

B. The City will further develop its residential organics program in negot iations and contract discussions in fall 2007 (2007).

C. The City will implement a new organics program on April 1, 2009, includ ing:

* All single-family customers will have organics collection unless the cus tomer is actively composting food in the yard (an exemption process will b e developed).

* A tiered can rate will be established for organics.

* All food waste will be included in organics collections.

* A future ban of all organics from single family garbage will be consider ed once the collection system has been fully established (2009).

D. Multi-family organics collection will be expanded to be a voluntary ser vice available to all customers no later than April, 2009. SPU will review and propose incentives and education programs that will encourage partici pation by property owners and residents (2009).

E. Collection frequencies for garbage, recycling and organics will be dete rmined in fall 2007 as part of negotiations with service providers. The ev aluation criteria for different collection alternatives (and costs, benefi ts and operational impacts associated with collection frequencies) will be determined in time for imp lementation in the 2009 collection contract. If weekly organics and every other week garbage are not part of the baseline 2009 collection contract, then pilots on these frequencies will be performed in 2010-2011 (2009-2011).

F. SPU will conduct a study by the end of 2010, to be done with an advisor y group, to determine the costs, benefits, operational impacts and effecti veness of a potential mandatory multi-family organics collection program w hich could be implemented by the end of 2011. The scope of work for the study will include a requiremen t to develop evaluation criteria (2010-2011).


A. Both North and South Recycling and Disposal Stations will continue to b e available for self-haul customers (2007 and beyond).

B. Newly constructed facilities will be designed to address present overcr owding. However, facility designs will assume a total self-haul disposal t onnage below current levels, due to anticipated diversion programs (2007 a nd beyond).

C. To help reduce tonnages, starting in 2008, self haul will be priced at full operating cost. As North and South stations are reconstructed, self- haul charges will ramp up to reflect at least partial capital costs as wel l (2008).

D. SPU will promote contracted and private sector pickup and diversion ser vices to self-haul customers, to increase station efficiency (2008).

E. In 2008, SPU will conduct a study to evaluate potential wastereduction incentives and disincentives targeted to self-haul customers. This study will include options such as on-demand or periodic curbside pick-up, provi ding periodic vouchers for private pickup service, and increasing public awareness of private pickup options to minimize self-haul customer traffic at City transfer stations. In 2009, the Executive will work with Council to determine next steps on minimizing self haul including pilot programs where appropriate (2008-2009).


A. The City will increase reuse/waste reduction/recycling of C&D waste thr ough the modification of the City’s current demolition permit by the end of 2008. The permit modifications will emphasize and give priority t o steps that would lead to the salvage and reuse of building materials. SPU will work with the Departmen t of Planning and Development (DPD) to develop the permit modifications an d to explore incentives and disincentives to developers and contractors to accomplish waste-reduction goals. Permit development will identify the minimum project size (in squa re feet) for which a demolition permit will be required (2008).

B. By mid-2008, the City will explore incentives such as grants, tax reduc tions, and development assistance to encourage private companies to develo p facilities for sorting and recycling C&D waste (2008).

C. By mid-2008, SPU will analyze potential waste reduction/recycling oppor tunities available to the City for C&D waste through development of a pub licly owned C&D facility and use of the City’s flow control authorit y (2008).

D. The Mayor and Council will make a decision by mid-2008 on whether to is sue a potential Request for Proposals (RFP) for either private or public C &D processing plant (s), based on the analyses detailed above (2008).

E. The City will consider providing incentives and requirements for larger development projects to promote recycling of C&D waste and use of recycle d materials in construction, and/or adopting a City requirement that a giv en percent of C&D waste from each construction site be reused or recycled. This could include requiring a recycling plan and fee deposit when issuing building and demolition per mits, with a portion of the fee refunded based on the amount of C&D waste recycled (2010).

F. The City will also consider grants, tax reductions, and other incentive s to encourage businesses to reuse C&D materials (such as roofing and dryw all) or reprocess them into new products (2010).

G. The City will review benefits, costs, operational impacts, and possible implementation time frames in recommending whether to pursue a prohibitio n on disposal of C&D recyclables as garbage at City stations (2010).

H. The City will review benefits, costs, operational impacts, and possible implementation time frames for increasing tipping fees for disposal of mi xed C&D waste while decreasing the fee for transfer station drop-off of so urce-separated recyclable C&D materials (2010).


A. SPU will increase support for the Northwest Product Stewardship Council (NPSC) (2008).

B. SPU will contract with the NPSC to conduct a study to determine the mos t effective strategies for local stewardship activities (2008).

C. The Mayor and Council will identify and consider potential state legisl ation regarding product stewardship for the 2008 state legislative session (2008).

D. SPU will evaluate the feasibility of implementing producer takeback pro grams and recommend appropriate action steps for Styrofoam packaging take- back, manufacturer/retailer take-back of used carpet and possible tax ince ntives or other business development incentives to promote local carpet-recovery markets, producer take-back and reprocessing for paint, and improvements to regional mercury containing product recycling/take-back for mercury-containing products suc h as fluorescent light bulbs and thermometers (2008).

E. SPU will actively participate in implementation planning for ewaste pro ducer-funded take-back programs and endeavor to ensure that implementation in Seattle captures the maximum feasible amount of ewaste (2008).


By mid-2008 SPU will conduct a comprehensive study of products, packages a nd ingredients that could be banned or otherwise discouraged through taxes or other means. This study will include:

* Identification of potential products, packages and/or ingredients that c ould be banned or discouraged in the near future.

* Legal alternatives for banning, restricting, or discouraging the use of products, packages, and/or ingredients.

* Criteria for evaluating such actions, including the actions’ costs and benefits, including water quality benefits to the Puget Sound basin.

* An evaluation of available substitutes for anything for which actions ar e proposed.

* Recommendations for an implementation/action plan based on a prioritized list (2008).

Initial products for review will include non-compostable plastic shopping bags and Styrofoam food containers, for which SPU will complete its study and recommendations by the earlier deadline of December 2007.


The following actions will be among those incorporated into the 2008 rate:

* Self-haul study and promotion of private curbside service providers;

* Product stewardship study/services from NPSC;

* Study on potential bans of certain materials;

* Rate study that evaluates rate designs for organics including variable c an rates and tiered commercial rates;

* C&D: Develop DPD program, Industrial Revenue bonds for C&D processing fe asibility, and draft RFP;

* Community waste-reduction matching grants; and

* Market development for problem materials.

Attachment A v.4b