5. What can I recycle?
Recycling services vary greatly from city to city. Some locales accept virtually all recyclable materials and offer readily available curbside collection. Others are still struggling to develop a cost-effective recycling infrastructure and offer little or no services to residents.
Check out your prospective city’s Streets Department on the Web to find out what you can recycle in just a few clicks.
If you plan to rent, find out whether your prospective city has laws on the books that require landlords to provide recycling options to tenants. In the absence of such regulations, talk to each prospective landlord about recycling services before signing your lease.
If your dream locale is lacking in recycling services, don’t cross it off the list right away. Check out Earth911′s recycling database to see if public drop-off locations and private programs can fill in the gaps.
6. What about composting?
In some areas of the country, composting is as simple as saving your food scraps in a bin and burying them in your garden or household compost pile. But living in a dense urban area can make reducing organic waste much trickier.
A growing number of cities, including San Antonio, San Francisco, Portland, Ore. and Tacoma, Wash., provide curbside compost collection for residents. But what should you do if your prospective city doesn’t pick up your organics?
Some cities, even those without widespread composting programs, offer publicly-funded composting facilities where you can drop off food scraps and other organic waste. Just save your scraps in a reusable container in the freezer until you’re ready to drop them off to keep the smell at bay.
Another option is local school or community gardens. Once you’ve chosen a neighborhood, drop by a few community gardens nearby and ask if they accept compostables from neighbors. For more tips on urban composting, check out Earth911′s guide to composting in the city.
Bet You’ll Love: Composting in Brooklyn With No Smell, No Flies