Paper Or Plastic: Tulsa Green Waste Disposal May Change

Tuesday, May 27th 2014, 7:14 pm

The City of Tulsa has to make a decision in the next few months between paper or plastic when it comes to getting rid of green waste.

Plastic bags are causing problems for Tulsa's trash service; they jam up the mulchers and a lot of people don't like dealing with them. The city might start letting people put yard waste in paper bags, or their own cans, which would be easier for the city to handle.

It turns out green waste in plastic bags is really just trash, so in the effort to be more green with green waste, the city trash board is laying the groundwork to get the bags out.

They've already eliminated the 50 cent green waste stickers that were required at first, and seem ready to accept a plan championed by city councilor Karen Gilbert, who was trying to find a more citizen friendly solution.

Even though a lot of people just fill their regular cans with yard waste, the city still believes there's a demand for a more environmentally friendly option.

"We're starting to see a tendency, since we didn't require the green waste stickers, we've seen a trend toward more people putting it out in the clear plastic bags," said City Sold Waste Manager, Roy Teeters.

The city plans to start hauling green waste collected curbside to a new, larger mulching site that's also going to be open to the public. The new 400 acre site is an old rock quarry and can hold all the mulch Tulsa would generate for the next 50 years.

It's not as far north as the old site, which is where people can drop off limbs and pick up mulch right now.

"It's a little bit closer to the middle of Tulsa and it's going to give us room to accommodate more people at a time," said Teeters.

The key is getting rid of the plastic bags, and that's why the city trash board is considering dropping that requirement and giving people the option of using heavy paper bags, or their own separate can to get rid of green waste.

City crews would still collect it as they do now and take it in for mulching.

The city still requires stickers for extra trash outside the cart, and that's not going to change. Whatever they do will only change the rules for yard waste, leaves and limbs.