The New York League of Conservation Voters, which works to make environmental sustainability a top political priority in New York, today called on all mayoral candidates to support the New York City Solid Waste Management Plan in its entirety.
Several mayoral candidates discussed the Solid Waste Management Plan last Friday night at a forum in Manhattan, where it appeared that some candidates have changed their views.
Passed in 2006 with strong support from New Yorkers, city leaders and environmental organizations, the Solid Waste Management Plan revolutionized the way New York handles its garbage. Prior to the plan’s implementation, the overwhelming majority of the city’s garbage was trucked into low-income and minority neighborhoods outside of Manhattan. For decades, those communities faced disproportionate environmental burdens including noise, reduced air quality and odors.
The Solid Waste Management Plan addressed this environmental injustice by requiring each borough to handle its own share of waste. The plan also helped clean the air and reduce quality-of-life complaints by establishing a system of marine transfer stations to reduce truck traffic and transport waste more efficiently. The locations of the marine transfer stations were carefully selected after exhaustive studies and community input.
After many years of debate, the City Council approved the Solid Waste Management Plan in 2006 by a vote of 44 to five.
“It is understandable that no one wants a garbage facility in their neighborhood. But New York cannot go back to the old, inefficient and unfair ways of the past,” said NYLCV President Marcia Bystryn. “The marine transfer stations can be made resilient to higher sea levels without abandoning the Solid Waste Management Plan. We strongly encourage all mayoral candidates to stand their ground and affirm their commitment to this smart, sustainable and equitable system.”
NYLCV was founded in 1989 as a nonpartisan, policy making and political action organization that works to make environmental protection a top priority with elected officials, decision makers, and voters by evaluating incumbent performance and endorsing and electing environmental leaders to office in New York State.