Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Why doesn't it happen here? 

St. Cloud charges for public waste pickup by the bag, but picks up recyclables for free. I have found this a great idea that worked to make many more people recycle. But reading Steven Dubner makes me wonder why his story doesn't happen in St. Cloud.
The introduction of new pay-by-weight trash charges in Ireland seems to have produced a strange and troubling effect: an increase in burn victims at St. James Hospital in Dublin.


The theory is that people wanted to avoid having to pay for all their trash so instead they burned it in their backyards.
I thought that the main difference would be the acceptance of burning in Ireland versus Minnesota, but it turns out burning was illegal there too. (At my parents' home in the Maine woods -- with private trash pickup paid as a flat fee -- trash was often burned in the stove in the living room.)

I cannot ever recall seeing someone burning trash in their back yard fire pits here. Why not?

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