Friday, March 20, 2009

Non amo AMA

When I got back to Rome this month, I'd received several pamphlets in the mail from AMA (waste management service) about their new door-to-door trash collection. Apparently, their main goal is to enforce proper recycling. And it's about time! Mind you, recycling bins do exist in Rome, but most people throw everything into one bin anyway. I myself have always fastidiously sorted my trash (you can take the girl out of America, but you can't take America out of the girl!), but most Romans are rather lax about it because 1) there have been numerous reports stating that the garbage men toss all the bins into the same truck anyway 2) Romans don't really seem to give a shit about their city's welfare.

Yesterday this was delivered to my door:

A year's worth of recycling bags (and a bin for organic waste). You have got to be fucking kidding me?! Where am I supposed to store all this? In this city, most people barely have enough room at home for their own belongings, let alone a year's worth of bags! My question is: seeing that AMA will be coming around to our building once a week to pick up our trash anyway, couldn't they just leave us weekly/monthly supplies? Whose idea was this? Seriously, it seems like every time they try to do something new & improved in this city, they screw it up by not thinking it through properly.
I may have to buy myself a bigger apartment in order to store all these bags...

7 comments:

Michellanea said...

We have the same thing in Milan (the compost bin and the umido bags). We keep the compost thingie out on the balcony. It would get pretty grody in the house. Actually, it's better that they give you those bags. We just ran out (if you DON'T recycle up here, you get fined so we are fastidious about it), and I had to buy some in the supermarket. Like 3 Euros for 15 bags.

Romerican said...

I don't mind the bags, I just wish they hadn't given us so many all at once. Yeah, my bin is going on the balcony (I feel sorry for the people who have no balconies!)

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

You have a balcony? Lucky.

Okay is your garbage is picked up only once a week or is that for just the recycled goods?

We have trash cans in the alley around the corner and we do have to sort out our trash. They pick up everyday except sundays.

I love the AMA truck that comes at 4:00 a.m. Ha

Romerican said...

NYC/Carribbean Ragazza- basically they're going to be removing all the bins (including the big recycling ones) in the street in my 'hood and will be doing door-to-door pick ups with a schedule: Tues, Thurs, Sat- organic waste; Wed, Sat- plastic, metal, glass; Tues & Fri- paper; Mon & Thur- all other trash. It's the same system they use in most big cities (NYC for example) but I have a feeling it's just not going to work out well here... Call me skeptical but these plans always seem to flop in Rome!!

Monika said...

HA, this is hilarious and so typical of the Italians!

J.Doe said...

In defense of the AMA, at least they are trying, but I wonder why they have to give out a year's supply all at once?
Where I live (US) they just give out garbage pails and bins. Are bags even necessary?

Romerican said...

J. Doe- Of course I give them an A for effort, but I'm cynical about the whole deal. The bins we have on the street now are perfectly good, in fact LOTS of them were recently replaced & modernized. The system we have now would be fine IF people actually followed the rules... But since Italians don't seem to care about the future, they just toss everything into one bin, ignoring the recycling rules. Maybe it would've been cheaper for them to air PSAs on TV in order to educate the general public. I'm not sure doing building-to-building pick up will actually force people to follow the rules. They can still toss everything together and AMA would have no way of knowing WHO in the building was responsible. My point is: the city should really think things through before investing lots of money in acquiring & distributing new smaller bins and in door-to-door trash collection (not to mention all the pamphlets, flyers, posters)... They could've left the system as is and merely added an organic bin on the street.