Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Rubbish in the Land of Basura
Since there is no shop in Barcelona with Travelpro wheelie bag parts, my poorly executed attempt at being a professional princess is destined for the rubbish bin. But that is not why I am showing you this rubbish bin photo.
No, it’s because I think Barcelona’s rubbish bins are so darn sensible. Not the rubbish bins themselves, mind you, because they are inanimate objects. But the use of them.
In the US, garbage pickup burns huge amounts of fossil fuel as giant diesel trucks go around to each one of our homes. Then men gather up small bags of garbage from the curb and physically carry it to the truck in the street, and toss it into the back. The truck drives about five feet, then this process is repeated until an entire neighborhood’s garbage has been collected.
In Barcelona, we are all required to carry our rubbish to the bins at the end of the block. The bins serve 2-4 blocks each. One bin is for glass, one for plastic, one for cardboard, and one for wheelie bags/coffee grinds/egg shells and the like. Then the trucks only need to make one stop for each several-block area.
And as an added bonus, it makes dumpster-diving more efficient for those down on their luck, or in need of a broken suitcase.