Remember to use compostable bags or reusable containers for yard waste this fall

As fall arrives and leaves start to fall, Minneapolis Solid Waste & Recycling customers should remember that all bagged yard waste put out for collection must now be in compostable bags – either Kraft (paper) bags or compostable plastic bags – or reusable containers. This change is required by state law, and in Minneapolis it began with this year’s yard waste collection season.

Yard waste in non-compostable plastic bags will be left and tagged for residents to re-package.

Using Kraft (paper) and compostable plastic bags rather than conventional lawn and garden plastic bags will reduce the amount of plastic being sent to local composting facilities. Screening out less plastic from the finished compost means lower processing costs and better quality finished compost.

Compostable plastic bags are distinct from conventional lawn and garden plastic bags because they are usually clear or a translucent shade of green, pink or white. Most home improvement, grocery, and hardware stores now carry them. Anyone who prefers not to purchase compostable bags may place unbagged yard waste in a reusable container with sturdy handles. Other options include dropping off yard waste at a compost facility and taking the bag back home, or composting yard waste at home and using the nutrient-rich compost for gardens and lawns.

Minneapolis Solid Waste & Recycling customers can set compostable bags of yard waste, bundles of brush and reusable yard waste containers next to their garbage cart by 6 a.m. on their garbage collection day through their pickup day in the week of Nov. 12. Branches and leaves must be tied with string or twine, bagged in a compostable bag or placed loose in a reusable container. Branches must be less than three inches each in diameter and less than three feet long. Bundles must weigh less than 40 pounds. All compostable bags and reusable containers must be 33 gallons or less and weigh less than 40 pounds.

For questions about leaf and brush pickup, call 612-673-2917 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. or visit the City's website.

Published Sep. 12, 2012