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2013 Rhode Island Composting Conference Gretel Clark Recycle Committee Chair, Hamilton, MA
Town of Hamilton 30 miles north of Boston on Cape Ann Tipping Trash $70/ton
Town of Hamilton Semi rural, conservative, New England town (15 square miles) 2600 households A little more than 8,000 residents Beacon of Hope
Some facts… Hamiltonians produced 1.22 tons waste annually before 2006 Average MA household produces one tone of solid waste annually Today, Hamiltonians produce <.5 tons solid waste; recycling 50%; 10.56% is composted kitchen organic waste.
Keys to Success • Find a hauler • Find a composter • Design a pilot program • Court political leaders • Institute a PAYT program • Charge high rate for overage bags • Gather a crew of dedicated enthusiastic unconquerable organizers • Establish a Trash Hot Line • Put together a strong education program • Find funding • Implement bi-weekly solid waste collection program
Lessons Learned • Larvae in hot summer months • Freezing in cold winter months • Animal control • Overcoming the “ick” factor
Benefits To the Town • Trash costs can be cut in half • New bag revenue (poor recyclers are now paying for the trash costs, not all their neighbors who provide the tax base.) • Anaerobic digester