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Eleanor Fausold '13
Eleanor Fausold '13

New York Times Publishes Fausold '13 Letter

Senior Thesis Research Answers Oped's Query

By Vige Barrie  |  Contact P. Gary Wyckoff
Posted May 28, 2013
Tags Environmental Studies Gary Wyckoff Government Hamilton In the News Public Policy Student Research

Eleanor Fausold ’13 penned a letter to the editor that was published in The New York Times in response to an op-ed titled “Is It Time to Bag the Plastic?” Referencing her senior thesis research on the costs and benefits of charging a fee for both paper and plastic bags in New York City, Fausold answered the article’s title question with, “The answer is overwhelmingly yes!” The letter appeared on the publication’s website on the day she graduated from Hamilton, May 26, and in print on the following day.

“Even if the [five cent] fee resulted in only a 10 percent reduction in paper and plastic bag use throughout the city, the policy would still yield enormous benefits,” Fausold wrote. “These benefits come not only in the form of revenue raised by the fee, but also through the millions of dollars saved from reducing collection and disposal and street-cleaning costs as well as avoiding contaminated recycling streams, not to mention lessening effects on the natural environment.”

According to Fausold’s thesis advisor, Professor of Government P. Gary Wyckoff, “The big news in the thesis is that, in addition to significant reductions in CO2 emissions, the fee would save the city almost a third of a billion dollars per year!”

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