Donor Supporters

Jessie Ong

Alhambra Source provides objective and important news reporting for our community.

Efren Moreno, Former Alhambra Mayor

Thank you Alhambra Source for truly informing the residents of Alhambra.

Jeff Maloney, Alhambra City Council Member

The Source has become an important source for news, public interest, and serious journalism in our community. Keep it up!

Sara Harris

As a career journalist and EJ advocate, I see community-based media like the Alhambra Source as crucial to democracy and equality.

Chris Olson

I support Alhambra Source as often as I can because I believe a free and independent press is vital to the democratic process. No other news outlet with high journalistic standards consistently covers the stories and issues that matter to our community.

Adele Andrade Stadler, Alhambra City Council Member

The Source is a great independent newspaper that celebrates the communities and is not afraid to ask the tough questions!

Cliff Bender, Vice President, Alhambra Education Foundation

I want to know what's going on in my community- News, events, and human interest stories. The Alhambra Source gives me the information I need.

Joyce & Oscar Amaro, Alhambra Preservation Group

We support Alhambra Source because this online news source is vitally important in engaging, informing and educating the residents of Alhambra.

Laura Vasquez

Alhambrans need to know the truth about our area!

Michael Lawrence, Alhambra Arts Commissioner

Keep bringing on the stories. The Source has given us so much and I am happy to donate to such an important part of our community.

Karsen Luthi

Thank you for creating Alhambra Source and providing timely reporting of important local news. Fight on!

Mr. Konnyaku

I support news reporting that is unbiased and informative. Really enjoy the excellent coverage on local city council and planning commission meetings.

Guadulesa Rivera

Alhambra Source unifies the community and keeps us involved.

Erwin Lee

Such a valuable source of what’s happening in city where we live. Objective reporting that informs us and allows us to come to our own conclusions.

That’s rubbish: A tale of Alhambra’s trash

Worn out shoes, banana peels, old toothbrushes, scratched CDs, or extra-wide boba straws are just some of the items you may find discarded by Alhambra residents. Separated into three distinct bins, or hurled into shared multi-family dumpsters, each week our trash is reluctantly dragged to a back alley or curbside location, hauled away by garbage trucks, and conveniently forgotten.

Although we part with our waste without much thought, I wanted to follow our trash as it begins a long and complex journey after being picked up by Allied Waste and Consolidated Disposal Services. I talked to Elizabeth Martinez of Consolidated Waste Services about the process, which involves a large fleet of trucks, a couple of transfer centers, a state-of-the-art material recovery facility, a few landfills, and even large international shipments.

The first stop for all of Alhambra’s refuse is Allied Waste Services’ East Los Angeles Transfer Center. This is where unsorted trash, recyclables, and green waste are each consolidated into 18-wheel trucks before being sent out to different locations.

Alhambra’s residential waste goes on its way to the Sunshine Landfill in Sylmar, where it is compacted, buried, and covered with layers of Alternative Daily Cover (ADC). The city’s residential green waste, which includes lawn clippings and compostable material, is used either as an ADC at the Puente Hills Landfill or as a land amendment for a North Hills Recycling site.

Items that get placed into the blue recycling bins, as well as unsorted multi-family and commercial waste, go on a different path and eventually end up at a huge material recovery facility (MRF) in Anaheim. Each day the MRF, which recently received a $20 million system update, sorts 6,000 tons of recyclable material by type, compresses it into huge bales, and packages it to be shipped domestically and abroad for processing. Non-recyclable materials that get filtered out along the way are eventually deposited into the Olinda-Brea Landfill.

So next time you throw away that old apple core or that piece of junk mail, think about their long journey out of your trash and recycling bins and across Southern California!

The Alhambra Source encourages comment on our stories. However, we do not vet comments for accuracy or endorse links to posts in the comment section. The thoughts and opinions expressed belong solely to the author of the comment.

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1 thought on “That’s rubbish: A tale of Alhambra’s trash”

  1. It would be nice to have options such as in Pasadena, where you can opt for a smaller trash can for a lower rate.