​​​​​Reimagine Phoenix is the city's initiative to increase the city's waste diversion rate to 40 percent by 2020, and to better manage its solid waste resources. As of late 2015, Phoenix's waste diversion rate is at 20 percent, but expansion of its community and educational outreach on the five pillars--reduce, reuse, recycle, reconsider and reimagine--hopes to increase awareness of the importance of waste diversion and management. Additionally, the Public Works Department offers solid waste programs to make waste diversion more convenient for residents, as well as partners with the public and private sectors to find solutions to current sustainability issues.  How can you take part in this initiative?

By enrolling in any of solid waste programs the city offers:


​Stories and Videos



Ellen MacArthur visits Phoenix506https://i.ytimg.com/vi/c5u57c9WY_w/hqdefault.jpgEllen MacArthur visits Phoenixhttps://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Ellen%20MacArthur%20visits%20Phoenix?Web=1https://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/506Ellen MacArthur, a leader in economic change and the namesake of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, recently visited Phoenix to talk to city leaders about the importance and need to create a circular economy for the 6th largest city in the U.S. Phoenix is the most recent and first major U.S. city to be a member of the MacArthur Foundation's Circular Economy Group 100, allowing the city access to waste management solutions from global partners. 0x0120D520A808009D486CA08E1AB3419A5476EAB9074212text/html; charset=utf-8 Video
Are you Recycling Right?479https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Are you Recycling Right.pngAre you Recycling Right?http://phoenix.gov/publicworks/residential-recyclinghttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/479 ​Find out the 10 materials that should always be placed in your blue recycling container.0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image
Lucas Mariacher520https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Lucas Headshot.jpgLucas Mariacherhttps://www.phoenix.gov/publicworks/reimagine/reimaginenews/new-recycling-coordinatorhttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/520Meet Phoenix's new recycling coordinator with big plans...0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image
Pesky Palm Fronds517https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/palm fronds.jpgPesky Palm Frondshttps://www.phoenix.gov/publicworks/reimagine/reimaginenews/the-solution-to-pesky-palm-frondshttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/517 ​Phoenix collects about 34,000 tons of palm fronds from residential and business customers. All are transported to the landfill to be buried...but not anymore. Find out an innovative way to repurpose those pesky palm fronds. 0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image

​More Great Stuff



Phoenix Moves to a Circular Economy17Phoenix Moves to a Circular Economyphoenix moves to a circular economyhttps://www.phoenix.gov/publicworks/reimagine/reimaginenews/phoenix moves to a circular economy<div class="ExternalClass11D249CD36AF48B4A8A82DBA8CAD9B68"><p><em>​<span style="line-height:20.8px;">​<img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Cities%20Today%20logo.png" class="ms-rtePosition-1" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:150px;vertical-align:baseline;" /></span><span aria-hidden="true" style="line-height:20.8px;"></span><em style="line-height:20.8px;">Nick Michell of <a href="http://cities-today.com/">Cities Today</a> ​spoke to John Trujillo, Phoenix Public Works director, about the city’s efforts to become more resource efficient and move towards a circular economy​. </em></em></p><p><em>This is a portion of the article published on </em><a href="http://cities-today.com/"><em>Cities Today​</em></a><em>, ​the leading magazine on urban development, reaching an international audience of city mayors and local leaders.​</em></p><p><em><strong><br></strong></em></p><p><em><strong><br></strong></em></p><p><em><strong><br>​</strong></em></p><p><em><strong>Why in 2013 did Phoenix decide to set a goal to increase its waste diversion rate by 40 percent by the year 2020?</strong></em></p><img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/MRF%20paper%20line.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:285px;height:198px;vertical-align:baseline;" />​The city of Phoenix has been a leader in solid waste with managed competition, automated collection and single stream recycling, however, the city realised that not much effort has been dedicated to the diversion of solid waste. With the projected increase in population doubling by the year 2050 and our solid waste trucks driving 7 million miles (11.3 million kilometres) each year to take trash to the landfill, the city felt it wasn’t a sustainable way to manage the city’s solid waste resources.<br><br>As the 6th largest city in the United States, we wanted to demonstrate our commitment and leadership when it comes to sustainability and waste management. A few years ago, Phoenix had a 16 percent waste diversion rate, which was dismal for a modern, metropolitan city. We needed to change that if we wanted to be viewed as a sustainable desert world-class city.<br><br>In 2013, Phoenix set a goal to increase its waste diversion rate. And with the guidance and approval of our Mayor and City Council, Phoenix launched its <a href="/publicworks/reimagine" target="_blank">Reimagine Phoenix</a> initiative with a goal to increase the city’s waste diversion rate from 16 percent to 40 percent by the year 2020 and zero waste by 2050. We believe that Phoenix can achieve this by focusing on three areas: expanding community and educational outreach, enhancing and adding solid waste programs and developing public-private partnerships.<br><br><em><strong>How important is it for Phoenix to move towards a circular economy and what are the main obstacles?</strong></em><br><br>It is very important. The city of Phoenix and surrounding metro area are projected to experience a continuous population growth for the next 30+ years. While we may have the means, the capabilities and even the funds to manage solid waste right now, we might not be in the same position a few years from now. Continuing to adopt a linear economy, which is “take-make-use-dispose,” is not sustainable and actually has many shortcomings. The linear model results in inefficient use of our scarce resources, increases harmful emissions and generates increasing amounts of waste from the whole value chain.<br><br>Having a circular economy, which is “take-make-use-recycle/repurpose,” is regenerative by design and can be achieved through excellent and well thought out designs of systems, or products and materials. The circular model stirs the economy and has the ability to create the jobs as well. This is what we want for Phoenix. We want to eliminate waste not only because it’s great for the environment and saves our resources, but it can create jobs that can only be positive for our local economy.<br><br>The main obstacles we currently face are getting entrepreneurs or businesses interested with working with Phoenix to utilise our resources to create products for use in our economy.<br><br><br><br></div>8/18/2016 7:00:00 AM
The Solution to Pesky Palm Fronds14The Solution to Pesky Palm Frondsthe-solution-to-pesky-palm-frondshttps://www.phoenix.gov/publicworks/reimagine/reimaginenews/the-solution-to-pesky-palm-fronds<div class="ExternalClassC80623B1A0E0449FA29496F133ACE80A"><p>​<img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Mexican_fan_palm_crown_(3139216079).jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-1" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:280px;height:214px;" /><span style="line-height:1.6;">Palm fronds have always been labeled as "problem materials" when it comes to disposal and reuse. Although considered organic, these materials can be difficult to compost. Phoenix receives about 34,000 tons of palm fronds each year, all of which end up in the city-owned landfill. With a citywide goal of diverting 40 percent of trash from the landfill by 2020 under the Reimagine Phoenix initiative, finding an alternative to burying tons of palm fronds became a priority. A Request for Proposals (RFP) was issued in January, and after review of proposals, Palm Silage, LLC. was the recommended proposer.</span></p><p>     On Wednesday, the Phoenix City Council voted ____ to award a palm fronds diversion services contract to Palm Silage Arizona, LLC, an Arizona limited liability company and subsidiary of Palm Silage, Inc. The company is based in California and has been transforming palm fronds into nutritional livestock feed in pellet form, as well as dairy chop. Palm Silage's qualifications and experience, business plan and the partnership's potential financial return and benefits to the city were qualities that characterized Palm Silage as the highly recommended proposer. </p><p>     "Innovative solutions like this are what it means to have a circular economy," said Mayor Greg Stanton. "This contract shows that regenerating and repurposing our resources can extend the life of our landfills and create jobs at the same time."</p><p>     The city's new contract with Palm Silage has two phases: Phase 1 allows the company to lease six acres of land at the Resource Innovation Campus (RIC) at the 27th Avenue Transfer Station to dry and grind<img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Livestock%20feed.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:157px;height:277px;" /> the fronds collected from residents and businesses; Phase 2 allows the company to lease four more acres at the RIC (for a total of 10 acres) to dry and grind the palm fronds, and to manufacture the actual livestock feed.  Under this contract, Palm Silage will have a 10-year lease with three 10-year options for renewal. The annual rent paid to the city during Phase 1 will be about $47,000; in Phase 2, the yearly rent will total to a $78,400.</p><p>     Palm Silage, Inc. will be processing the palm fronds that residents and businesses bring to the two city-owned transfer stations. The city will pay Palm Silage, Inc. $12 per ton of processed fronds it collects, which is $5 less per ton than what the city currently pays to transport and bury these materials to the landfill. This contract could potentially generate 12 jobs and up to $10M in taxable sales each year. </p><p>     "Phoenix is taking a product that would have gone to the landfill and turning it into an innovative cost-saving solution," said Councilwoman Thelda Williams, chairwoman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee.  "This is exciting, not only are we lightening the load that goes to the landfill, but we're saving taxpayer dollars and creating new jobs."</p><p>     Using specially-designed equipment, Palm Silage, LLC. will grind​ the fronds until they have a hay-like consistency. The ground fronds are mixed with other nutritional ingredients, including dates as a natural sweetener. Palm hay or pelletized feed is produced as the finished product. True to the concept of a circular economy, where waste materials are regenerated and repurposed, the livestock feed produced will be sold statewide at first, and then nationally.</p><p>     "Palm Silage, Inc. is the only company in the world with patents pending on a process to convert palm fronds into a highly nutritious livestock feed. We are very excited <span style="line-height:1.6;">about our partnership with the city of Phoenix and are honored to be recognized as innovators in waste diversion," said Jim Parks, CEO of Palm Silage, Inc. ​</span></p><p>     According to the company's research, palm fronds have the same nutritional value, or even higher, than the usual alfalfa used in livestock feed. Diverting 34,000 tons of palm fronds will increase Phoenix's waste diversion rate by approximately 3 percent. ​</p></div>6/23/2016 7:00:00 AM
Reimagining in the Twin Cities16Reimagining in the Twin Citiesreimagining-in-the-twin-citieshttps://www.phoenix.gov/publicworks/reimagine/reimaginenews/reimagining-in-the-twin-cities<div class="ExternalClass13B229D2BFCC43F491190C6E3922AC5F"><p><em><img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/TLG%202.JPG" class="ms-rtePosition-1" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:173px;height:173px;vertical-align:baseline;" />(A  month ago, deputy Public Works director, Felipe Moreno, and administrative assistant II, Renee L​atour, represented the Phoenix Public Works Department at the Transforming Local Government (TLG) conference in St. Paul, Minn.)</em></p><p><span style="line-height:20.8px;">by: Renee LaTour</span></p><p><span style="line-height:20.8px;">T</span><span style="line-height:20.8px;">he Transforming Local Government (TLG) conference attracts over 800 local government professionals and elected officials who are seeking new and innovative ways to connect people and make their respective communities better. The conference is a gathering place for information and ideas to develop the best communities to live, grow, work, play and prosper.</span>​</p><p><span style="line-height:20.8px;">I was immediately impressed with St. Paul's cleanliness. I was even more impressed with the city's diversion efforts at the hotel, restaurants and conference center. Every trash receptacle was accompanied by a recycle section or bin. At the conference center, there was a trash, recycle and compost bin at every tsolid waste station. There were even compost bins in the restrooms!</span>​​<br></p><p><span style="line-height:1.6;">In a city that has one of the largest solar power system built on a structure and one of the biggest Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in the country, we had quite the challenge of convincing city managers and council members from all over the U.S. that Phoenix also is poised to be a leader in sustainability. </span></p><p>We had a blast presenting the Reimagine Phoenix initiative to 25<img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/TLG%201.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:203px;height:203px;vertical-align:baseline;" /> TLG attendees. Deputy director Felipe Moreno explained Phoenix's move toward a more circular economy, and explained to the participants the simple definition and benefits of adopting a "circular economy," as well as provided tips on how to achieve it. Since the goal of the Reimagine Phoenix initiative is to reduce the amount of trash sent to the city's landfill and inspire residents to reduce, reuse, recycle and reconsider consumption habits, we kicked-off our presentation with an activity involving a small bag of various solid waste materials to be sorted. Attendees had fun sorting the bag of solid waste materials into the three different commodity bins--trash, recycling and green organics. Ultimately, the goal of the game was to have nothing placed in the mini trash bins provided.  </p><p>Our activity and presentation were well-received. Every participant enjoyed the interaction, and each seemed to have had an "a-ha" moment about waste diversion. </p><p>Thank you, St. Paul, forb an outstanding experience that we can share with the rest of the Public Works staff. <br></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height:1.6;"><br></span></p><p><span style="line-height:1.6;"><em><img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/RENEE%20MUG.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:80px;height:105px;" />Renee La Tour is an Admiistrative Assistant II for the Phoenix Public Works Department's Solid Waste Services section.</em> </span><br></p><p> </p><p><br></p><p>​</p></div>8/18/2016 7:00:00 AM
Get to Know Phoenix's New Recycling Coordinator15Get to Know Phoenix's New Recycling Coordinatornew-recycling-coordinatorhttps://www.phoenix.gov/publicworks/reimagine/reimaginenews/new-recycling-coordinator<div class="ExternalClass8421B80876234606B396C4757CEC2FE7"><p>​     <img src="/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Lucas%20Headshot.jpg" alt="Lucas Headshot.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-1" style="margin:5px;width:137px;height:207px;vertical-align:baseline;" />Lucas Mariacher never thought he would work in waste management and diversion. As a student at Arizona State University (ASU), he landed a part-time job with the university assisting in its recycling services. Realizing that there were organizational gaps in the university's recycling and other waste diversion programs, Lucas worked with management to implement various changes at all four ASU campuses. His bright ideas quickly moved him up in the ranks. </p><p>​     A little over a month ago, the city of Phoenix was looking to hire a new recycling coordinator, who would lead a team in providing a robust and diverse community and educational outreach to Phoenix customers. Lucas' experience in waste management, dedication to educating the community about recycling and other waste diversion practices, and his enthusiasm to meet the Phoenix community made him perfect for the job. <br></p><p>     Get to know Lucas, and be on the lookout for his weekly forum on recycling and waste diversion on Facebook every Thursday. </p><p><em style="line-height:1.6;">     What did you do before taking on this job as Phoenix's recycling coordinator?</em></p><p>     I was a Program Manager for the Zero Waste Department at ASU.  I managed enterprise-wide recycling operations for the university.  I also ran the Zero Waste Athletics program.  All athletic events on campus are now zero waste.</p><p><em>     What would you like to accomplish in your first year with the city?</em></p><p>     I would like to modernize and simplify all recycling signage for the city, implement a voluntary commercial recycling program, develop a new marking campaign, put an effective city facility recycling program in place, and initiate a zero waste high school that hopefully sets the example for other schools to follow.</p><p><em>     What is your biggest pet peeve about waste diversion?</em></p><p>     My biggest pet peeve at the moment is the lack of recycling/diversion opportunities at businesses and dining establishments.</p><p><em>     It's a Saturday and you're super hungry…which restaurant do you go to and what do you order?</em></p><p>     I would probably end up at Chipotle ordering a chicken burrito. </p><p><em>     Where did you grow up and where did you go to college?</em></p><p>     I grew up in Buffalo, NY and made my way west after high school.  I obtained both my bachelor's and master's degree from Arizona State University.</p><p><em>     What's the most interesting location you've been?</em></p><p>     I haven't done much traveling but I am going to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil this summer to watch my brother in-law compete in the Olympics, so that is exciting.</p><p><em>     What do you think would be your biggest challenge while in your new position?</em></p><p>     I think the biggest challenge would be changing the culture in Phoenix on why individuals should recycle.  Culture change is difficult, but I believe if we can provide a clear vision and messaging for our program it will make it easier for people to invest in recycling and diversion opportunities.</p><p><em>     What type of music do you listen to?</em></p><p>     Hip-hop, and 90's music.</p><p>​ </p></div>

​Discover the 5 Rs



Reduce279https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Reduce.jpgReduce/publicworks/reimagine/reducehttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/image/279 ​the amount you consume, and the amount of waste you create.0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image
Reuse280https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Reuse.jpgReuse/publicworks/reimagine/reusehttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/image/280 ​materials you already have, or share them with others to be reused.0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image
Recycle281https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Recycle.jpgRecycle/publicworks/reimagine/recyclehttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/image/281 ​more of your trash by properly sorting it into compost or recycling rather than throwing it into landfill.0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image
Reconsider282https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Reconsider.jpgReconsider/publicworks/reimagine/reconsiderhttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/image/282 ​everything you discard, and how smarter choices can save you and your community money & resources.0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image
Reimagine278https://www.phoenix.gov/publicworkssite/MediaAssets/Reimagine.jpgReimagine/publicworks/reimagine/reimaginehttps://www.phoenix.gov/public-works-media/image/278 ​the future of Phoenix region when we all lessen our impact, use resources more wisely, and support a beautiful, more sustainable future.0x0101009148F5A04DDD49CBA7127AADA5FB792B00AADE34325A8B49CDA8BB4DB53328F214007261B76BC63D0E4EBACF33B95059A506Image