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Following the Migration Patterns of Our Trash Following the Migration Patterns of Our Trash

Following the Migration Patterns of Our Trash

by Andrew Price

July 17, 2009
MIT's great SENSEable City lab recently announced a project to tag thousands of pieces of trash in New York and Seattle with wireless location markers so they can follow where our discarded coffee cups and shampoo bottles actually go. They'll make these trash "migration patterns" available online and in live exhibitions beginning in September.They're hoping the project, called Trash Track, can expose inefficiencies in how our cities deal with trash, and make people think twice about careless consumption.This is great. Trash sometimes lingers in public view, in bins or on the street, but once it's out of sight we really just forget about it. This "removal chain" is a critical part of the infrastructure of our cities, though, and has a lot to do with overall resource efficiency. Some transparency should really help.
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