Our household waste bins are only collected ONCE every TWO weeks. It is the same procedure for our Recycling bins (that do not allow glass).
Inevitably many peoples' bins end up stinking to high heaven especially during the summer months.
I take the following action:
* I rinse out used binnable containers before I throw them away. * I tend to cut up large plastic containers (to take up less space in the bin). * If I'm in the vicinity of the dump I dispose of my rubbish myself.
* Every week I carry a bagful of empty plastic milk containers, wine bottles and tins to the recycling bins around the corner.
In Paris, the general rubbish is picked up every day (except May 1st). The recyle bin is picked up twice a week (but it should soon be three times a week) -- that holds paper, plastic and metal. The glass bin is picked up once a week. In smaller cities, obviously pickup is not as often.
We have garbage collection pick up twice a week. You are allowed to throw ANYTHING in these large (2 small people,one medium size person could fit inside one)heavy duty plastic closed lid bins. No one polices what is in them and there are no rules or regulations,merely suggestions. We do not have a municipal recycling program. There was one preKatrina but it was never brought back despite numerous efforts. What is available for $30.00USD per month is a private recycling retrieval from your home but ,it is limited to paper and metal. No glass or plastic. I use my newspaper in the garden as a weed barrier with pine straw or other leaves to go on top as mulch. Glass I take to the glass recycling place at one of the colleges who use it in their Art Dept. All the remaining paper and metal I put in a wealthy neighbors private recycling bin (with their permission). Two of us don't generate too much trash and the can that goes out curbside we have never filled.
The suburb I live in is part of a collective of suburbs & rural villages, instead of being joined to Toulouse, which would have been much more logical, but it was a political decision made a long time ago.
Anyway, our garbage is now picked up twice a week. In one of those pickups, there is a bin for recycled stuff (plastic, paper, cardboard), and the other day they take away glass. They used to pick up garden cuttings, branches, etc; then last year they decided it was unfair to apartment dwellers and farmers who burn their own stuff. So now we have to drive to the dump with branches and leaves, since composters fill up really fast. And all the older women around here who don't drive but have gardens are supposed to pay the city to come pick it up. Meanwhile, they did not lower the cost of the garbage pickup, even though they reduced the service. This has caused much petition signing and complaints, but to no avail.
Word has it that we will have to start paying by weight of garbage soon. Of course, this being France, I have been told that unscrupulous people will start putting their garbage in their neighbour's garbage cans.
I just remembered a garbage police story told by a friend who lives in Toronto. One of her friends, who is single and doesn't generate much garbage, was going on vacation. Since she had only a small bag of garbage and didn't want to leave it lying on the street, she put it in a container in a local park.
The garbage police traced her name from papers found in the bag and fined her for putting her household garbage in a public bin.
In our small village where I grew up that was (is) a summer colony for ultra wealthy we used to find ,after the weekends, huge bags of household garbage in,around,on top of the garbage cans at the public beaches. Not just a small bag here and there. Some of it wasn't even bagged properly and the seagulls and goodness knows what other creatures would scavenge. Every Monday morning it would be there. My stepfather would get so incensed about it and complain to the town authorities and still nothing was done. He finally took matters in his own hands and camped out waiting to catch the miscreants.Sure enough,back to back came 2 or 3 BMW's or fancy Range Rovers with their weekends worth of garbage to dump there illegally. He had a few words with them and shamed them. These people with their millions,oceanfront property,fancy vehicles felt entitled to just dump their crap for someone else to clean up rather then pay to have it hauled properly!
The municipal truck comes by my house twice a week. It rings a bell and you take your garbage out to the truck. I think technically you don't have to tip the municipal truck workers, but I do anyway to be on the safe side. This works out, since they idle in front of my gate ringing the bell to give me a chance to empty the kitchen and bathroom trash and hustle the big garbage can down to the street. This neighborhood doesn't seem to have "auxillary" pick-up, although most do. Those are private trucks who pass through neighborhoods and collect. This is really important because there is a most unfortunate predilection for burning garbage around here. Apparently, any recycling and sorting is done at the dump. We don't have special bins nor are we told to sort.
It is common at least in Paris for the sanitation workers to use envelopes and other papers to identify and fine miscreants.
I remember reading several years ago when Japan first started doing serious recycling, there were a lot of problems with people not sorting their rubbish properly and also sneaking the nasty stuff over to the neighbors. The authorities decided to impose clear plastic waste bags for collection so that they could see everything inside in detail. However, the Japanese are more like us than we often given them credit, so there was a major revolt about this, causing the authorities to back down. But I don't know what solution was finally found.
Years before recycling home garbage was in play, there were always stories (in the US, at least) of secret drinkers who'd sneak their incriminatory empties into the neighbors' trash in the dead of night.
My brother-in-law lives in Dublin. He told us their local taxes are very low, but of course, the result is that there is practically no garbage collection. In the city centre, we saw bags of garbage from offices that had special tags on them to show that the pickup had been paid for. And there is a lot of "wild dumping". I saw a newspaper article about garbage being shoved in caves near the sea near Wicklow, and as the water comes up, it washes it all out.