Now that Los Angeles is finally on the road to city-wide recycling, it may seem trivial to debate how many trash cans will be provided to residents and what size they will be. In fact, the size and number of cans are significant indeed. Providing residents with more trash cans than they need allows no incentive to produce less trash. Providing too few cans frustrates people, threatens the success of the program and could result in illegal dumping.
There is no controversy over the number of recycling bins to be provided. Everyone agrees that each household should receive as many as it needs. On the other hand, the size and quantity of trash cans to be provided is likely to provoke a lively debate.
Based on estimates that the average household generates about 120 gallons of trash each week, I have opposed a staff recommendation to give each household two 90-gallon containers. That sends exactly the wrong message. Instead, I have proposed that each home receive two 60-gallon containers. Additional cans could be available as needed for a nominal fee.
Los Angeles Councilwoman