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Onvia first reported on the City of Seattle’s plan to issue fines for residents who didn’t compost their food waste in 2015. The city attempted to lead the charge as the first city in the nation to legally require composting, as well as being the first city to publically disclose and even fine homeowners for not properly sorting their garbage.

However, King County Judge Beth Andrus ruled recently that it was unconstitutional for the city to check what was inside a person’s trashcan and fine them. As The Seattle Times put it, “What was in that teriyaki carton in your garbage … stays private.”

While citizens may be wary of “trash-snooping,” as some people have called Seattle’s law, in general, large portions of the U.S. population want to dispose their waste in more eco-conscious ways. For instance, as of April 2016, 34% of Minneapolis Solid Waste & Recycling customers have agreed to participate in its organic waste recycling program.

It will change the way we service customers, not just on the compost side, but the municipal solid waste side too. It will change how people handle their household waste.

American Disposal Services General Manager Kevin Edwards, WasteDIVE

Sustainability Motivates Agencies When Issuing Waste Management Contracts

City and county agencies across the U.S. are heavily motivated to find to operate sustainably. Here are just two examples of related contract awards uncovered in Onvia’s database of past and present government contract opportunities:

City of West Allis in Wisconsin
The city awarded a five-year, $1.02 million contract in 2015 for yard waste management services to Purple Cow Organics.
San Antonio Water System in Texas
The utility district awarded a three-year, $4.42 million contract in 2013 for biosolids composting and marketing services to New Earth, Inc.

Furthermore, Onvia’s database of forward looking spending plans and budgets revealed that many agencies plan to spend more around environmentally conscious waste management efforts in the near future:

City of Beverly Hills in California
The city allocated $300,000 through 2019 to develop a “Zero Waste Plan” to reduce waste, greenhouse gas emissions associated with waste creation and disposal, and decrease reliance on landfills.

The Impact of Smart Technology on Waste Management

It’s important to note that Onvia’s 10 Hotspots in Government Contracting for 2016 lists solid waste consulting & design services as one of the top growth categories in the overall state, local and education (SLED) government contracting market. The report discusses that while waste management has been a service area traditionally defined by low-tech methods and processes, in recent years, there has been an emphasis on finding efficiencies by making garbage and recycling smarter. Like most areas of government service today, agencies are finding ways to do more with less and are looking to innovate the business of solid waste with that in mind.

The 10 Hotspots report shows that the following 5 states issue the most of solid waste consulting & design bids & RFPs:

Top 5 States for Solid Waste Consulting Design Bids & RFPs - Onvia

Rapid Change in the Public Sector Waste Management Industry Signals Opportunity

While we have a long way to go in our fight to end hunger and eliminate food waste, this past year has demonstrated that awareness of the food waste challenges in our country is growing.

Anthony Dilenno, President of HAVI Global Solutions’ Recycling & Waste Solutions

In an article for WasteAdvantage, Dilenno wrote that state and local governments may propose new laws, introduce technology innovations and institute industry best practices to generate more organics recycling programs.

Businesses in the waste management space have an opportunity to influence the adoption of these practices and trends that are changing the way waste management is done. Firms that collaborate with agencies can influence government decisions, which can greatly increase their chances of winning the contracts as well.

Your copy of the full report awaits