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Know the West

A guide to some trashy reading matter


Note: This article is a sidebar to this issue's feature story, Pay as you waste, says EPA.

When it comes to trash, most reading matter is so boring that it belongs in the local landfill.

Two informative exceptions:

The Garbage Primer: A Handbook for Citizens, produced by the League of Women Voters and published in 1993 by Lyons and Burford, ISBN 1-55821-250-7. This defines many complex terms and explains the regulatory situation in clear English, which makes it almost unique.

Rubbish! The Archaeology of Garbage: What our Garbage Tells Us About Ourselves, by William Rathje and Cullen Murphy. Published in 1992 by HarperCollins, ISBN 0-06-016603-7, Rubbish details the work of the Garbage Project at the University of Arizona, where students and faculty analyze what they find in garbage cans and landfills. If there is any good science, as opposed to wishful thinking or mythology, in the complex world of trash, it's here, and the book is fun to read, too.

For more information about Saguache County's landfill operation, write to Brad Jones, County Administrator, P.O. Box 655, Saguache, CO 81149, or Ellen Cox, Recycling Coordinator, P.O. Box 476, Saguache, CO 81149.

The county's collected material for recycling is picked up by Reclaimed Resources of Imperial, Nebraska (800-213-3934), which sells the material to industries and shares the proceeds with the county.