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During the Tuesday meeting, city council voted in favour of continuing the current collection schedule for organic waste that was adopted in August.
During the meeting councillors suggested to staff that there hasn’t been enough time to see long-term benefits.
The program has been underway for three months and Glen Farrow, the city’s streets and environmental services manager, says 1,851 tonnes of organic waste (about 133 tonnes per week) has been diverted from the landfill.
Council agreed to direct staff to report back on the results of collecting during the winter.
Starting this week until the end of February, organics will be collected biweekly on garbage days.
Then, starting on Mar.1, organics will return to a weekly collection schedule.
“The shift to a winter biweekly organics collection was part of the plan for the community rollout because we know that organic waste volumes are significantly less in the winter, mostly because of less yard waste,” Farrow says.
“During the pilot program, the average weight of organics per household in July was over 10 kg per week, while in December, that number was just over 3 kg per week. This data shows us we can be more efficient in the winter months by running fewer trucks and using less fuel.”
Residents and a few councillors had concerns about extra waste piling up during the holidays as families have more people around and more waste on Christmas.
Despite those concerns, the city is asking residents to “think ahead” during the holiday season.
Currently, the city’s solid waste collections schedule follows a skip-a-day format that sees collection bumped a day after a statutory holiday, like Christmas and New Year’s Day.
“Since garbage and recycling are now collected every two weeks (alternating) and because of three statutory holidays impacting the solid waste schedule, residents can expect a slightly longer period between collection days,” a release from the city says.
Details on the schedule over the winter can be viewed here.