Mayor Gavin Newsom is competitive about many things, garbage included. When the city found out a few weeks ago that it was keeping 70 percent of its disposable waste out of local landfills, he embraced the statistic the way other mayors embrace winning sports teams, improved test scores or declining crime rates. Workers sort plastics at the San Francisco Recycling Center. The city, with 7,800 tons of waste a day, keeps 70 percent of it out of landfills. Mayor Gavin Newsom is shooting for 75 percent. But the city wants more.

Scientists, inventors and entrepreneurs are focusing on ways to help the environment. Some of our favorite ideas.

IN THE 1967 film The Graduate, Dustin Hoffman's character, Benjamin Braddock, receives a single word of advice about his future from a well-meaning friend of his parents: "Plastics." Our fearless, environment-saving duo of Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Environment Minister Peter Garrett were 10 and 14 respectively when the film came out, and it seems plausible that they sucked this message in with their generational DNA but were too young to recognise its satirical intent.

Clean streets, clean localities, clean markets

The embarrassing rubbish mountain in Naples subsides

MCD officials today said the engineered sanitary landfill site, which the civic body is developing at Jaitpur, will be ready by December this year.

A seven year remediation program for the hazardous waste treatment site situated at the Ramat Hovav Industrial Zone in Israel begins.

The Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) has said it is unable to collect garbage from city thoroughfares beginning Sunday because of lack of fuel to run its garbage trucks. Since last three days, the KMC has not sent its vehicles to dump garbage in landfill site in Sisdole and the transfer station in Teku has already filled up. "Due to lack of diesel, we cannot collect and transport the garbage. We cannot resume our task unless fuel is made available,' Rabinman Shrestha, environmental engineer at KMC's Environment Department. The KMC has said it requires 2000 liters of diesel everyday to run its garbage collecting vehicles. sd Feb 17 08

In this article the authors have elaborated a consistent framework for the quantification and evaluation of eco-efficiency for scenarios for waste treatment of construction and demolition (C&D) waste. Such waste systems will play an increasingly important role in the future, as there has been for many years, and still is, a significant net increase in stock in the built environment.

>> More than 100,000 tonnes of rotting garbage are lying on the roadsides of the southern Italian city of Naples, after garbage trucks stopped operating since the last week of December 2007 because