I can see the future for Fairfax homeowners

Humans produce waste.  Not just bodily waste, but all kinds of garbage.  Most of what we know about Stone Age cultures comes from examining their garbage piles.  If Fairfax, California, has its way, though, archaeologists are not going to have an easy time of it if they’re scavenging Fairfax garbage in the distant future:

Fairfax residents would be encouraged to produce less garbage and likely face another increase in garbage collection rates in December or January if a new franchise agreement with Marin Sanitary Service is approved by the Town Council this week.


The major difference between the proposed new agreement and the town’s previous 10-year contract with Marin Sanitary is that the new contract contains incentives to move the town closer to zero waste goals. The agreement requires Marin Sanitary to meet zero waste goals of 80 percent by the third year, 86 percent by the sixth year and 94 percent by the ninth year.

The agreement sets the goal of reducing use of 64-gallon cans to fewer than 100 residents and eliminating use of 96-gallon garbage cans by Dec. 1, 2016. The contract states, “If this goal is not achieved Marin Sanitary and the town will confer to evaluate options including imposing disincentive fees for 64 and 96 gallon containers.”

I’m all for reducing waste, up to a point.  For example, when I realized I had no bird cages to line, I canceled my subscription to the San Francisco Chronicle.  I also don’t like buying stuff very much, and the less you buy, the less you have to get rid of.  But even I, a low-use consumer, manage to have a household that generates garbage — and when that garbage is generated, I want it outside of the house and gone within the week.  Under these Fairfax proposal, though, it seems as if the garbage company, by contract, does not want you to place too much of your garbage outside, and it’s not going to take it away if you do.

I have a vision of the interior of Fairfax houses in the future as the homeowner’s struggle to comply with the new garbage requirements.  Without professional help, it’s not a pretty one: