SAN FRANCISCO – On America Recycles Day, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department is proud to announce the successful results of the Eco Pop-Up program at Mission Dolores Park in its second year. From April until the end of October, the Eco Pop-Up diverted 81 percent of waste from landfill into recycling and compost. Before Dolores Park’s renovation, less than three percent was diverted from landfill. Because the Eco Pop-Up has been immensely successful at Dolores Park, it will return in the spring for a third consecutive year.
The Eco Pop-Up was also successful in spring and summer of 2015, when the Eco Pop-Up diverted more than 68 percent of park users waste to recycling and compost.
On a busy weekend, visitors of Dolores Park generate up to 7,000 gallons of trash. Prior to the Eco Pop-Up, all of that went to landfill. It is widely known that proper source separation of materials before collection leads to greater processability of recyclable and compostable items as well as a decrease of landfill materials.
As such, SF Rec & Park, in partnership with Recology and the San Francisco Conservation Corps, decided to provide the Eco Pop-Up, a staffed, large-scale recycling and compost disposal area, complete with signage, instruction for use, and educational materials throughout the park to encourage park visitors to recycle and compost their waste.
“The employee-owners of Recology are proud to partner with The City to help make recycling easy and convenient for people visiting Dolores Park. If you pack it in, pack it out, and be sure to utilize the recycling bins. Doing so helps keep this beautiful park clean, keeps materials out of landfills, and saves trees,” said Robert Reed, spokesman for Recology.
The Dolores Park Eco Pop-Up was open from 12p.m. to 6p.m. on Saturday, Sundays and Holidays. At its location on Dolores Street, staff and volunteers helped park visitors separate beverage containers, pizza boxes, sandwich wrappers, and other picnic discards into separate metal bins designated for recycling, compost, and landfill.
An analysis conducted in spring 2015 concluded that more than 65 percent of refuse in Dolores Park is either recyclable or compostable. The predominant recyclable items were glass bottles and plastic containers (cups, tubs, jars, etc). These materials can and should be recycled. With the Eco Pop-Up, SF Rec & Park’s staff, along with volunteers, encouraged park users to take their discards to the Eco Pop-Up for recycling and composting.
The Eco Pop-up is one of the many steps that the City and Recology have taken to improve waste management at Dolores Park with the vision to make Dolores Park a clean and enjoyable space open to all. In addition, SF Rec & Park in partnership with merchants around Dolores Park launched the Love Dolores campaign. The campaign encourages park users to pack it in, pack it out and use the waste receptacles on the perimeter of the park. They can also pack it out to the Eco Pop-Up. More information about Love Dolores campaign can be found at LoveDolores.com.
America Recycles Day is the only nationally recognized day and coast-to-coast community-driven awareness campaign dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States. It has been held on – and in the weeks leading into – Nov. 15 since 1997.