Seattle Passes Nation’s First Yellow Pages Phone Book Ordinance

Posted by — October 13, 2010 4:14 pm

Are you tired of receiving the yellow pages phone book directory? If you live in Seattle you can now “opt-in” and “opt-out” with the City of Seattle’s latest solid waste reduction ordinance. The ordinance established an opt-out registry and recovery fee to directory publishers, becoming the first in ordinance in the Nation placing financial burden of phone book disposal on the publishers.
The opt-out registry will serve as a clearinghouse for residents and businesses to register and indicate their desire not to receive delivery of some or all yellow pages phone books. Distributors shall not make delivery of yellow pages phone books to the address of any resident or business who registered with the City’s Opt-Out Registry. Publishers that deliver books to those that have opted out are subject to fines.
The recovery fee is imposed on the distribution of yellow pages phone books within the City to pay a $0.14 for each yellow pages phone book plus $148.00 per ton of yellow pages phone books distributed within the City to cover the city’s costs of recycling the estimated 2 million directories distributed annually.
“Seattleites are constantly looking for ways to reduce their impact on the environment, and the Council has heard from an overwhelming number of people who don’t want phone books,” said Councilmember Mike O’Brien, the prime sponsor of the legislation.
The City of Seattle has targeted a recycling goal of 60 percent by 2012 as part of its Zero Waste Strategy, stating that phone books represent 2.7 percent of the material (by weight) accepted at the curb each year.

Photo by Flickr User: monkeyatlarge

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