Waste Reduction Efforts
Through the efforts of the Waste Reduction Advisory Committee, the city has made significant strides towards reductions in waste.
Zero Waste in City of Lafayette Facilities
The City of Lafayette has adopted Zero Waste initiatives in City Hall and at the Senior Center in which employees and citizens are encouraged to use Zero Waste stations placed throughout both facilities. Compostable dishware and utensils are purchased for staff and City Council meetings and events.
City of Lafayette Green Purchasing Policy
The City of Lafayette is currently developing a Green Purchasing Policy for the City which will focus on the reuse and repurposing of materials, reduction of waste associated with excess packaging, the preservation of virgin materials by reducing and eliminating their use throughout the City by purchasing alternative sustainable items or items with recycled content.
Single Stream Recycling
Diversion Achieved: 28% waste diversion
In 2007, the City of Lafayette embarked on a journey to see if the City could develop a contracted curbside pickup of single stream recyclables and a Pay-As-You-Throw (PAYT) collection program for over 5,600 single-family homes. Western Disposal won the bid and provides a PAYT collection program with a comprehensive single-stream curbside collection program.
The results of the Lafayette PAYT and single-stream recycling have benefited the City:
- Now only one trash company serves the local neighborhoods in Lafayette which extends the life of local roads.
- That one trash company on local roads minimizes the diesel engine noise and pollution.
- Lafayette’s residential recycling and composting rate went from an estimated 10% to 12% rate to a documented 38% diversion rate, which represents approximately 140 tons per month of material that is recycled or composted, and not landfilled.
- The City contracted program resulted in a cost savings to most Lafayette citizens, better service, choice in the size of trash cart needed to meet the needs of the individual homeowner, other value added services that were not available before the City program and overall a highly beneficial program that has proven the worth of a PAYT system to incentivize recycling.
Since 2006 the City of Lafayette has initiated Zero Waste efforts at local festivals. In addition to a tremendous diversion of waste, this program educates vendors and attendees on the benefits of Zero Waste and establishes Lafayette as a forward thinking, environmentally sustainable community.
Peach Festival Zero Waste Event
Diversion Achieved: 90% diversion rate
With over 20,000 attendees, the City is able to achieve a 90% diversion rate by having volunteers staff the 12 Zero Waste stations located throughout the festival.
Oatmeal Festival Zero Waste Event
Diversion Achieved: 98% diversion rate
With over 3,500 attendees, the City is able to achieve a 98% diversion rate by having volunteers staff the Zero Waste stations located throughout the festival.
In addition to the two annual Lafayette events, WRAC implemented recycling stations at the Wine Festival (2006 & 2007), Celebrate Lafayette (2006 – 2010), and Art Night Out (2018 - 2019 - with composting stations as well) allowing participants to reduce waste and capture recyclables and compost.