Los Alamos County (LAC) Environmental Services, the Environmental Sustainability Board, and the Los Alamos Zero Waste Team, would like to thank the community for their efforts and support to make the Los Alamos Summer Concert Series a zero waste event. Although the zero waste concept may have been new for some community members, after 15 concerts, most were able to sort their materials into recycle, compost or trash with little prompting from the zero waste station volunteers. Significant amounts of waste were successfully diverted from the landfill, and recovered for recycling and reuse.
This effort would not have been possible without the help and support of LAC Parks & Recreation Division and Sancre Productions. Sancre Productions was on board with making the concerts zero waste from day one. Although vendors were not required to serve food on compostable or recyclable service ware, it was strongly encouraged. The majority of the vendors participated enthusiastically to help produce less trash and we also commend their efforts.
LAC Parks & Recreation Division staff helped cover all the trash and recycle cans on the south side of Ashley Pond and collected the bags of materials at each zero waste station. This was a huge help.
With dedicated help from the Zero Waste Team, Environmental Sustainability Board, Environmental Services employees, Los Alamos High School Eco Club and volunteers from around the community 44 percent of all waste generated at the Summer Concert Series was diverted from the landfill. An estimated 32,000 people attended the 15 concerts generating a total of 10,640 pounds of material. Of which, 5,920 pounds were trash, 2,000 pounds were compostable, 1,540 pounds were recyclable, and 1,180 pounds of recyclable glass was collected. Although the County does not currently have a food composting program, the compost material that was collected was weighed and hauled to Soilutions composting facility in Albuquerque.
Every concert there were volunteers at each of the four Zero Waste stations helping people sort their waste and educate them on diversion (recycling, composting, reduction, etc.) The Zero Waste Stations were a huge success and well embraced by the community and visitors alike.
If you would like to make your events zero waste, consider providing reusable service ware, and having a zero waste station available to sort compostable, recyclable and trash materials. To find out more about hosting zero waste events, please contact Environmental Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505-662-8163.