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Less need for more landfill space reduces the cost and resources needed to secure new landfill space. "Composting also extends municipal landfill life by diverting organic materials from landfills and provides a less costly alternative to conventional methods of remediating… contaminated soil." (EPA, 2008)
It is evident that the advantages and benefits of composting are quite substantial, and arguably outweigh the disadvantages or issues involved with the process. Nevertheless, the previously discussed issues can be impeding to achieving the full benefits of composting, and thereby need to be dealt with suitably. For a government intending to implement a mandatory composting regulation, it would be necessary for them to also ensure that all residents within the region are properly educated on the procedure. Also, the government would need to make appropriate arrangements for residents living in apartments, business owners who are not in charge of their building's waste management, and issues related to sanitation. On a micro level, all residents would need to utilize the educational information and tools received from the government to ensure they are correctly maintaining their compost system and avoid problems such as odor or attracting insects and rodents.
For a mandatory composting regulation to truly be successful, the onus is on the government and waste management department to ensure that all aspects of the program run smoothly. In David H. Folz's study titled, Municipal Recycling Performance: A Public Sector Environmental Success Story, data revealed that the cost of composting inclusive recycling programs "on average, compared very favorably to the costs of traditional solid waste collection and disposal based on the data provided by local recycling managers." (Folz, 1999) the government will definitely be able to afford to implement an efficient and resourceful program. Folz study revealed that although the examined municipal recycling programs faced initial trial and errors, they were able to achieve positive outcomes in the long run due to their dedication. Mandatory composting as part of a recycling program relies upon a "coproduction partnership between citizens and their local governments." (Folz, 1999) Even though it remains an enforced regulation, in order for it to be successful it requires effort and commitment from both the government and the residents.
Based upon this analysis of composting, it is apparent that mandatory composting can definitely be a viable regulation for the City of Toronto. Enforcing a recycling program that includes composting, would be the most compelling method of getting all Toronto residents to take an active role in preserving the environment. People would have no choice but to abide by this legal decree, or else they would face the repercussions. Toronto's waste management department could develop a system of punishment for individuals who do not abide by the regulation. They could take some examples from San Francisco's policy, and administer fines to those caught breaking the composting law.
Alongside this system of punishment, the government could perhaps provide rewards for individuals who actually abide by the law, for example tax return credits. Another example could be the use of market incentives that "are introduced by replacing the common flat-fee pricing for waste disposal with a quantity-based pricing system by which households pay in relation to the amount of waste they generate." (Reschovsky & Stone, 1994) in hopes of reducing their disposal fees, this would motivate homeowners to diligently compost and decrease their waste material. The most important factor for Toronto's government and waste management department is that there should be a concrete plan of action before the regulation is actually implemented, in order to create an effective and efficient small scale mandatory composting program.
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