Tuesday, April 1, 2008 - 7:33am
Madison - Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz is joining forces with a national wildlife group to ban the sale of compact discs in the city of Madison by April 22, 2010, Earth Day of that year. The Mayor plans a press conference today to announce the groundbreaking plan.
Cieslewicz is working with the National Seagull Preservation Society on the initiative, the first of its kind in the nation, although several municipalities in Sweden and Norway have banned the discs for years.
"We applaud Mayor Cieslewicz for his courageous leadership on this issue," said Janet Ontario, Executive Director of the NSPS in Washington, D.C. "For too long the nation has had a deaf ear to the plight of the one million seagulls who die each year because of the careless waste of compact discs all across the nation."
Ontario cited a 2004 study from the University of Stockholm which showed that discarded discs which end up in landfills get caught in the beaks of feeding seagulls. The small holes in the center of the discs are just large enough to fit over a seagull beak and when lodged there they prevent the gull from feeding.
Cieslewicz's proposal comes on the heels of moves by cities such as San Francisco which has banned plastic grocery bags and plastic water bottles.
"Madison has kind of let those other cities get out in front of us on a few things, but with this initiative we can regain our leadership on the cutting edge of environmental policy," Cieslewicz said.
Madison Recycling Coordinator George Dreckmann added that the CD ban will also save on petroleum products since the plastic CDs and their packaging are made from oil and the CDs need to be shipped around the world. "Each CD you purchase is really made up of three barrels of oil," Dreckmann offered helpfully.
Cieslewicz and Ontario both said that the work of the Seagull Preservation Society could not be possible without the generous support of iTunes.
- George Twigg(608) 266-4611