Tag: Waste Materials and Disposal

The Plastic-Hunting Pirates of the Cornish Coast

The Cornish coast — with its high cliffs and inlets, lining the peninsula that juts out from England’s southwest corner — has a long association with pirates. Its rocky coves, secret anchorages and long winding creeks have historically been a haunting ground for seafaring scoundrels and salty sea dogs. Today, it is the home of an […]

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Americans Coping With the Coronavirus Are Clogging Toilets

Many Americans seem to be following the recommendations of public health officials to clean and sterilize countertops, doorknobs, faucets and other frequently touched surfaces in their homes. The problem? Many are then tossing the disinfectant wipes, paper towels and other paper products they used into the toilet. The result has been a coast-to-coast surge in […]

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How Big Businesses Get a ‘Deep Clean’ in Coronavirus Pandemic

On a recent day on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, traders were cheek-to-cheek as stock prices flashed above them. They stood in clusters shouting, sharing screens, sharing pizza, sharing pens. They shook hands, leaned over shoulders, patted each others’ backs, hugged. There were no windows open. The New York Stock Exchange was […]

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Finally, a Plan for New York’s Sidewalk Trash Bag Mountains

They are piled all over New York — unsightly monuments of trash blocking sidewalks and threatening pedestrian safety. For years, overstuffed garbage bags awaiting pickup have looked like an unavoidable fact of life. Now, the city is rolling out two plans that officials hope will eliminate the problem. The first would require new residential buildings […]

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Hunger Is on the Rise. Food Donors Are Getting Creative.

When Diego Gerena-Quiñones zips through the afternoon traffic in Midtown Manhattan on his cargo bike, it looks like he could be delivering shoes or office supplies. But his load is much more indispensable. Everyday, Mr. Gerena-Quiñones and others at his cargo bike company make numerous pickups for Transfernation, a nonprofit that arranges for corporate cafeterias […]

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Europe Wants a ‘Right to Repair’ Smartphones and Gadgets

LONDON — Hoping to replace that two-year-old smartphone in a few months? The European Union wants you to think twice about doing that. The bloc announced an ambitious plan on Wednesday that would require manufacturers of electronic products, from smartphones to tumble driers, to offer more repairs, upgrades and ways to reuse existing goods, instead […]

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Mandatory Composting in New York? It Could Happen

Millions of New Yorkers may soon need to separate scraps of fruit, vegetables and meat into separate garbage receptacles every time they cook and do dishes — learning another new habit just as they did with plastics recycling in the 1980s and are now doing under a recent ban on plastic shopping bags. The City […]

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When the Ocean Gives You Plastic, Make Animals

This article is part of our latest Museums special section, which focuses on the intersection of art and politics. BANDON, Ore. — Angela Haseltine Pozzi stands shoulder to shoulder with Cosmo, a six-foot-tall tufted puffin, on a cliff overlooking the blustery Oregon coast. It is January and the deadly king tides have come to Coquille […]

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My Tireless Quest for a Tubeless Wipe

Hello, I am the toilet paper lady. I am the shopper who rushes up, wide-eyed, to the managers at the grocery store to ask why my brand of choice, Scott Tube-Free, has gone missing from the shelves. I point to the line in the big merchandise ordering book to make sure they see the right […]

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White Supremacy Goes Green

As an environmental journalist, I’ve been covering the frightening acceleration of climate change for more than a decade. As a person who believes in the tenets of liberal democracy, I’ve watched the rise of white-supremacist, anti-immigrant and nationalistic ideologies with similar dread over the past few years. But I always thought of those two trends […]

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Banquets Are Back in Fashion. But Where Does All the Food Go?

Photo shoots tend to offer a standardized landscape of amenities: A folding table blanketed in single-serving plastic water bottles. A large plastic tray of snackable food that will end up barely half-eaten. Cans of soda unlikely to be recycled. And then, once the set is broken down, there will be trash cans full of untouched […]

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Taming the ‘Wild West’ of New York’s Dangerous Private Trash Trucks

Department of Sanitation trucks collect New Yorkers’ residential trash and recycling, each one covering a compact route. But picking up garbage from businesses is a more chaotic and dangerous process, one that New York City is trying to change. Each business, whether a bodega or an office tower, hires one of dozens of private hauling […]

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Nothing Says ‘I Love You’ Like Secondhand Roses

Roses on Valentine’s Day don’t seem like such a kind gesture when you think about them getting shipped to the city on cargo planes from Ecuador, or decomposing in landfills and converting to methane gas. So what’s a climate-conscious romantic to do? Consider the case of Leatal Cohen, an idealistic young florist and the owner […]

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7 Reasons Recycling Isn’t Working in New York City

If you are a New Yorker and sort your recycling at home, as city law mandates, you probably wonder, as you rinse bottles and stack junk mail and scrub yogurt containers: Does all this effort make a difference? Well, yes, but not nearly as much as it could. New York City recycles only about a […]

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China Says It Will Ban Plastics That Pollute Its Land and Water

BEIJING — It’s piled up in landfills. It clutters fields and rivers, dangles from trees, and forms flotillas of waste in the seas. China’s use of plastic bags, containers and cutlery has become one of its most stubborn and ugliest environmental blights. So the Chinese government has introduced measures to drastically cut the amount of […]

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How to Get Rid of 9,000 Tons of Toxic Topsoil

Dylan Sharbonier and two other construction workers were hanging a green tarp on the fence surrounding one of 13 lead-tainted ball fields in Red Hook, Brooklyn, this month, their fingers red from below-freezing temperatures. “We need to get these fields open by spring,” Mr. Sharbonier said. “The kids need these fields.” Locals are more circumspect. […]

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