Venice Has a Garbage Problem

It is a reality that all the excess garbage in the city comes from those who don’t live in Venice. I’ve seen the system they have for dealing with their own trash. They put out a little bag of stuff in the morning and it gets picked up. I’m assuming that there must be some kind of payment that they make for this service. Because of this, they don’t put out too many trash cans because they seem to want people to have their trash picked up by this service. So in effect, they then have very few cans out for the general public (tourists) to use.

Now we get to annoying part because I’ve always heard from friends who live in many a touristic place like Venice that all the tourists leave is their garbage. To this I respond, yes, because they have no where to put it. It seems that these cities think that if they don’t put out trash cans, it will stop tourists from leaving stuff there and they won’t have a problem. Wrong. People create garbage. The way to stop them from creating more is by not having people visit. But then this is an issue because all the money in these towns comes from tourism.

This is one instance where I don’t blame the tourists for bad deeds, as being one myself in Venice I walked for up to hour at a time to find somewhere to put garbage from something I bought to eat in Venice and no, I wasn’t being Dutch and bringing food with me. When I’m in a place, I respect the fact that I need to buy food and other goods from the place to enjoy it. But I would often find myself tucking a small piece of trash in to a box that was lying someone because there were no trash cans. I would find in that box a great many other peoples’ trash as well, which shows me that people do respect the place and don’t want to toss garbage on the ground (there are some that do of course) and because they don’t have enough trash cans out, people just try to find the least offensive place to put it. It’s also the case that when you find a trash can, it will be inexplicably full because everyone is putting their trash there and they don’t dump them often enough. The heavily trafficked areas like Saint Mark’s are among the worst in this.

So, what’s the solution? Here’s what I suggest, and I’m not sure how much of this is actually there and just not functioning. Get rid of any payment that the citizens are paying for trash pickup. Put taxes on anything touristic like shops that sell knickknacks, vaporettos that tourists take, etc. Direct all that money in to trash pickup which will make life far better for the people that actually live in Venice and those that visit it. I think that getting rid of garbage is something that should be completely levied on the backs of tourists since we create most of it. Oh, and put out some damned recycling bins. We’re all drinking bottles of water and sodas there. Make some money from our waste! Even though he have plenty of public trash cans in San Francisco, we’re still working on this last point as well.