Thursday, July 8, 2021

Changes at Los Reales to reflect city sustainability efforts

Posted By on Thu, Jul 8, 2021 at 4:04 PM

The Los Reales Landfill is getting a new name—and a new mission.

Tucson Mayor Regina Romero and the Tucson City Council voted this week to rename the Los Reales Landfill as the Los Reales Sustainability Campus.

It is part of a larger planning effort to achieve waste reduction goals established by City Council in a Climate Emergency Declaration.

The declaration committed the City of Tucson to reach carbon neutrality by 2030 and to become a zero-waste city by 2050, with an intermediate 50% diversion goal by 2030. The city currently spends more than $8 million per year at Los Reales for waste processing and disposal operations. 

“To become a zero-waste city, we must fundamentally change the way we view waste—from a liability to an asset,” Romero said in a prepared statement. “The Sustainability Campus is an outside-of-the-box initiative to transform Los Reales from merely being a landfill to a sustainable space—illustrating our city’s commitment to acting on climate.”

The project will also update the layout of Los Reales, designing it for new sustainability uses, including allowing solid waste/resource management companies to locate at this campus, space for a city tree nursery to help supply the Tucson Million Trees campaign, installation of solar panels and 500 feet of buffer between the campus and adjacent properties.

“The Los Reales Sustainability Campus will be a catalyst in attaining many of the city’s sustainability goals while yielding extensive community benefits for current and future generations,” said Carlos de la Torre, director of the Environmental and General Service Department.

City staff is working with the Mayor’s Office, the City Commission on Climate, Energy and Sustainability, the Environmental Services Advisory Committee, Mayor Romero’s Climate Action Advisory Council and community stakeholders to outline a plan to achieve zero waste at Los Reales.

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