Council passes comprehensive waste minimization plan
Strategy will see waste diverted from landfills double in 5 years
Released: 12:46 p.m.
NEWS @ A GLANCE:
Committed to ensuring Winnipeg no longer has the worst waste diversion rates in all of Canada, City Council today voted 11-4 to accept a waste minimization plan that will provide enhanced uniform service city-wide and offer citizens numerous environmental programs. (for more details, please read the full media release below)
WINNIPEG - October 19, 2011 - Committed to ensuring Winnipeg no longer has the worst waste diversion rates in all of Canada, City Council today voted 11-4 to accept a waste minimization plan that will provide enhanced uniform service city-wide and offer citizens numerous environmental programs.
Winnipeg has the worst waste diversion rate (15%) in Canada. We need to find a more sustainable way to deal with our garbage so we don't leave it for our children to inherit. Currently we bury all of our garbage at Brady Landfill which harms the environment by producing greenhouse gasses and leachate, a noxious liquid that is a by-product of decomposing garbage. Not only is this unsustainable environmentally but our costs are significantly increasing in order to treat these by-products.
To take action on this problem, Council asked the public service to prepare a comprehensive waste management plan for the entire city to increase our waste diversion rate to 50% or more by reducing household garbage and significantly increasing household recycling.
"I am pleased that Council today passed this comprehensive plan so we can move forward in ensuring we are diverting more material from our landfills and providing a better future for our children," said Mayor Sam Katz. "People often talk the talk about being green and sustainable, but today council walked the walked and future generations will thank us for taking action and showing leadership today."
Residents will receive a new 240-litre rolling garbage cart and a new 240-litre rolling recycling cart to replace the blue boxes. For the first time, residents will receive curbside yard waste collection. Residents will now be able to take bulky items, electronic waste, and household hazardous waste to community depots. These depots will be established in the 4 regions of the city at a cost of over $13 million. A new $20 million dollar recycling facility will be built in order to handle the additional recycling material, doubling capacity. In 5 years we will more the double our waste diversion bringing it to 35%.
Another benefit of this initiative is safety. By providing uniform collection with carts with lids, we have less waste material disposed on our city streets resulting in a cleaner city. By providing positive alternatives to dispose of bulky material, hazardous and electronic waste at depots, we can deal with these materials in an environmentally responsible way, reducing the risk of arson, illegal dumping, and improving public safety citywide.
Changes will begin to take effect in the Fall of 2012 and will be preceded by a comprehensive educational campaign.