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Our beloved officials at the MTA announced yesterday that refuse left behind from riders has resulted in "about 15 tons more trash a day" than in 2004. Authorities noted communter newspapers like AM New York and Metro, which are hawked outside of subway entrances, are particularly responsible in the increase in garbage, and "may be in large part to blame for a surge in track fires."

We always knew the freebie papers weren't just garbage — they're perfectly good for kindling, too. Also worth noting: When there's a track fire, there will be delays; and when there's delays, what better way to pass the time than with a free paper? Quite the vicious little circle they've got going.

MTA Blames Commuter Papers for Surge in Track Fires [NY1]