Waste - NYC Mayor's Office of Climate and Environmental Justice
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Together, New Yorkers can build a city where we use less, reuse more, and put an end to waste.

There is no “away” when we throw garbage into a can or litter basket. New Yorkers produce nearly four million tons of waste at home and another four million tons in offices and businesses every year. This trash travels to landfills or incinerators, or pollutes our streets and waterways. It also contributes to climate change.

Reusing and recycling all kinds of materials, reducing truck traffic, and transitioning toward a circular economy are important steps on our course toward carbon neutrality by 2050.

Waste Equity Law

The NYC Department of Sanitation (DSNY) worked closely with the City Council and advocates to develop Local Law 152 of 2018, which cut permitted capacity at private waste transfer stations in four overburdened community districts.–advancing environmental justice and ensuring that no district would become overburdened in the future. The Law, fully implemented in September 2020, eliminated 10,000 tons per day of private waste transfer capacity, reducing truck traffic in poor and minority neighborhoods while preserving capacity to expand NYC’s recycling and composting programs.

One third of New York City's waste comes from food waste.

By the fall of 2024, NYC will have the nation’s largest composting program, with guaranteed, free, year-round service for every single resident across all five boroughs. To maximize the benefits of organic waste streams, and to prioritize environmental justice, the City is undertaking an interagency study led by MOCEJ, DCAS, DEP, NYC Parks and DSNY.

The study will evaluate options for organic waste management across agencies according to costs, risks, market potential, and local impacts.

Learn more about the Citywide Organics Study.

Take Action

When we bring our voices, our action, and our advocacy to our schools, our homes, and our workplaces, we can create a more sustainable and resilient future for the 8.3 million people who call our five boroughs home.

Take Action Now

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