Zero Waste Community Planning, 10/22

10 am-12 pm PDT / 1-3 pm EDT


Over 100 communities in the United States have adopted Zero Waste goals and developed Zero Waste Plans, including most of the major cities on the West Coast and East Coast. Zero Waste planning processes have varied widely, with most communities engaging a wide variety of stakeholders in the planning process. 

This panel includes leaders in communities throughout the nation who have participated in the Zero Waste community planning process who will highlight how their communities approached the development of Zero Waste Plans. They will also speak about how their communities addressed some of the topics below, including how they have worked to implement their Zero Waste Plans through the adoption of Ordinances or Requests for Proposals (RFPs) and Invitations for Bids (IFBs). 

Topics to be discussed include: Dignity and Justice in Pursuing Zero Waste, Focus for Community Recycling Ordinances – Haulers, Generators, or Both; Best Practices for RFPs and Contracts (for communities); Zero Waste Culture Change; Living the Dream – Zero Waste Lifestyles; and Resource Recovery Parks.


Kate Bailey

Kate Bailey

Kate Bailey is the Policy and Research Director for Eco-Cycle, based in Boulder, Colorado. Eco-Cycle is one of the oldest and largest recycling nonprofits in the world and has 44 years of hands-on experience in creating community infrastructure, policies and programs to reduce waste and increase recycling. Kate is an expert on best practices in creating Zero Waste communities and has worked directly with local government, state legislators, citizen groups, business leaders and brands to advance Zero Waste solutions as a critical step toward addressing our climate crisis. Kate has a B.A. in Environmental Studies with a minor in Economics from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Outside of work, she’s always happy to talk about hiking, gardening and women’s soccer.
Policy & Research Director
Portia Sinnott 2016

Portia Sinnott

A Zero Waste advocate consultant, Portia Sinnott enjoys leading and taking part in a wide variety of projects. Past favorites include: UN Habitat’s Solid Waste Management in the World’s Cities, USEPA’s Managing and Transforming Waste Streams, and more recently, the Palo Alto Zero Waste Plan Update, and Mountain View Zero Waste Plan and Materials Characterization Study.

As the Zero Waste USA Program Director, Portia develops Zero Waste courses, resources and assessment tools and conducts in-person and web trainings. In addition, she is Co-Founder and Executive Director of Zero Waste Action – Sonoma County, and manages Community Bikes, a collaborative reuse and repair shop in Santa Rosa. A former President of the Northern California Recycling Association, she has been the NCRA Editor for 10+ years and recently rejoined the Board. On behalf of all of these groups, Portia collects data on Zero Waste initiatives, convenes brainstorms, large meetings and a wide variety of projects focused on the transition to a world without waste.

Zero Waste USA

Program Director

Caroline Mitchell

Caroline Mitchell

Caroline Mitchell is the Lead Waste Reduction and Recycling Specialist at the City of Fort Collins. She develops waste reduction and recycling policy, coordinates education, and is the data person for Fort Collins, as well as supporting recycling in the business and multi-family sectors.

Caroline has worked in the recycling industry for 17 years, working for non-profit recyclers Eco-Cycle in Colorado and Recycle Ann Arbor in Michigan prior to joining the City of Fort Collins. She has served on the board of Recycle Colorado and has a bachelor’s degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Colorado Boulder.

City of Fort Collins

Waste Reduction and Recycling Lead Specialist

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