LBA Associates (with Kessler Consulting) worked with the City of Boulder to evaluate the efficacy of their existing waste diversion system and opportunities for future improvements. The cornerstones of Boulder’s residential program are i) a universal “trash tax” that generates $1.7M annually, and ii) a three-cart open hauler system for the collection of recyclables/organics/trash using PAYT pricing (although collection service is not yet mandatory, the city’s diversion rate is over 40%, however). LBA/KCI found ways for the city to reduce costs and maintain service while planning for system-wide improvements such as every-other-week trash collection, mandatory trash/recyclables collection, mandatory commercial recycling/food waste recovery, and C&D diversion. We estimated that these improvements would earn the city long-term net annual revenues in excess of $500,000. Boulder staff and council are currently building their zero waste plan update around these improvements and others.
This project is the most recent in which LBA has tackled the special waste diversion challenges at ski areas and in their surrounding communities. We have consistently found that waste generators in Winter Park, Steamboat Springs, Vail, Silverton and Summit County on-going support and collaboration with local governments, flexible policy, attention to space and aesthetic needs, and recognition for their efforts.