My last post celebrated the City of Chicago’s 177th birthday with recognition that more effort is necessary to make Chicago a sustainable city. Over the past three decades, the Chicago Recycling Coalition has fought for sustainable waste management practices in Chicago, including shutting down the Northwest Incinerator, opposing new landfills in the city, and advocating for effective curbside recycling collection for all Chicagoans.
This work continues, and I am proud to be on the CRC’s board of directors as the struggle to ensure all Chicagoans have recycling services marches on. While much work remains to be done in the future, CRC’s past is worth examining and scholars may now do so at the Chicago History Museum. Last year, the CRC donated 17 linear feet of documents from the years 1985-2007, and these records are now available to the public. The CRC’s story would make a fine urban environmental history dissertation and/or book, and these records are vital to telling that story.