No More Rat Buffet | God's World News
Closing the Rat Buffet
News Shorts
Posted: March 04, 2024
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    Uncollected garbage overflows onto a sidewalk in Manhattan, New York City. (AP/Bebeto Matthews)
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    A rat comes briefly out of its hole at a subway stop in Brooklyn, New York City. (AP/Julie Jacobson)
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A new rule is meant to clean up New York City.

For years, New Yorkers put their bags of trash on the sidewalk. Garbage collectors picked them up there. But officials say that was a “24-hour rat buffet.” The rodents can easily chew through plastic garbage bags. They wiggle inside to feast on leftovers.

Rats have been a problem in the city for years. They carry diseases and damage property. Officials have tried lots of traps. But the creatures still scamper around the streets.

Part of the latest rat plan is to keep trash contained. Now more people must use garbage bins.

Last fall, the city started rolling out the new rule. Over time, more businesses and homes are added to the plan. By September 2023, restaurants, convenience stores, and chain stores had to use a sturdy trash can with a secure lid. As of last Friday, every single business in the city had to get a bin.

Soon small apartment buildings will come under the rule too. And in spring 2025, all buildings in some neighborhoods will be required to use outdoor containers.

Mayor Eric Adams announced last month that the city will eventually use trucks that can lift and empty large containers. These trucks are common in many cities. But New Yorkers are used to seeing sanitation workers toss bags into trucks by hand.

Officials say city trash collectors grab about 44 million pounds of waste each day! (Can you imagine how much garbage that is? That’s about the weight of 132 blue whales.)

All that trash adds up to a lot of rat food. Mayor Adams hopes that the new rule will cut down on rat resources. And there’s a bonus. The streets will likely be less stinky too.