Neighborhood Priorities: No to Curbside Recycling?

Neighborhood Priorities: No to Curbside Recycling?

Grace Shu
Feb 25, 2008

After spending a few days with my sister and her family in Texas, I'm really appreciating how convenient recycling is in LA. There are recycling centers at nearly every grocery store and public recycling bins on the sidewalk. But things are a bit different in Houston where my sister and her husband live in a gated community: the HOA recently voted against curbside recycling because it added $200 per year to the dues.

(In an odd twist, the HOA did vote for a doggy pooper-scooper service to keep the neighborhood walkways clean because the residents weren't picking up after their pets.) Residents of their community who want to recycle must drive about 30-45 minutes in traffic to a big recycling center near the edge of the city. When I asked my sister about recycling bins at the grocery stores, she said, "Yeah, they aren't there anymore--probably because people would put pretty much anything in those bins."

Ever since my nephew was born this past year, my sister and her hubby have been a bit less...vigilant...on the recycling front. They try to offset their waste by doing little things like reusable bags and containers, and are contemplating switching over to cloth diapers. Anyone have any tips on how to be green in an area that isn't hip to recycling?

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