(Bloomington, MN) — June 30th, 2023 — The City of Bloomington was awarded with a 2023 Sustainable City Award by the League of Minnesota Cities at the League’s Annual Conference, held in Duluth. The City was honored for its bulky item management program.
The bulky item management program began in 2022 to provide a means for residents to sustainably dispose of bulky, unwanted items. Prior to this program, Bloomington held curbside cleanup events every spring since 1964, allowing residents to place unwanted items on the curb for Bloomington garbage haulers to collect – often resulting in materials being landfilled.
The program includes a modified, every-other-year curbside cleanup with limited items accepted, a monthly pick up of reusable and recyclable bulky items from the curb, an annual recycling drop-off event, and swap events for reusable items. In 2022, the modified curbside cleanup resulted in 584 fewer tons of waste landfilled, 61 tons of material was recycled or reused, and the first swap event diverted 0.65 tons of gardening tools for reuse.
The Sustainable City Award is presented annually to recognize sustainability efforts by a city among those participating in the Minnesota GreenStep Cities program – a free, voluntary program designed to help cities meet environmental sustainability goals through the implementation of 29 best practices. The League partners with eight other organizations, including non-profits and state agencies, to administer the GreenStep Cities program.
Bloomington’s program incorporates several GreenStep Cities best practices including Sustainable Consumption and Waste and Benchmarks and Community Engagement.
The League of Minnesota Cities is a membership organization dedicated to helping cities throughout Minnesota build quality communities through effective advocacy, expert analysis, trusted guidance, and collective action. The League serves 838 member cities through advocacy, education and training, policy development, risk management, and other services.