PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Three Rivers Arts Festival is finally here.

And you’ll be seeing a lot of composting signs.

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“It’s easier,” says Teresa Bradley with the Pennsylvania Resource Council. “It streamlines the process for the event attendee. Many times when you go to an event, it is confusing and you don’t know which bin to put it in, so that’s why we do education. We will have people on the ground.”

As before, you will be able to recycle traditional materials.

“All paper, plastics No. 1 through 5, and No. 7 is accepted in the city along with metals and glass — and it all goes into one container, one bag, exactly how it is for city residents at their curbside pick-up,” said Ross Hirschfield with the Pennsylvania Resource Council.

However, the green changes come at a cost.

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“It’s hugely expensive and I found that it was very challenging to find compostable products specifically on short notice in smaller quantities,” said Jeff Abramovits with Rita’s Italian Ice.

This year, all vendors must serve items in compostable containers. That includes knives, forks, spoons, straws and lids — and it’s not cheap for them to go green.

And ultimately that cost will be passed on when you pay for the items you buy in the next 10 days.

“I think the green’s a great idea,” said Abramovits. “It’s just expensive and somebody’s got to pay for it and it can’t all be absorbed by the vendor.”

So it boils down to this: just like everything else, when it comes to going green, you get what you pay for.

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