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Statement from Councillor Kelly on Waste Diversion Solutions and Proposed Tag Program

"I am very motivated to find solutions to increase diversion of waste away from the Trail Road landfill facility. To better understand the problem and the viable solutions available I have been touring diversion and waste facilities and have been impressed with how many are tackling this serious problem.

Having said that, I do not think that the tag program proposed by City of Ottawa staff considered the very valid concerns of residents of rural areas such as Ward 5. Nor do I believe this program would be applied equitably given that residents residing in multi-unit dwellings would not have the tag program apply to them.

I believe we have much more work to do as a city, in terms of educating people and encouraging them to use their green bins and be more thoughtful about how they discard the waste they generate. I do not want to remove personal responsibility but many residents in our ward work extremely hard to divert waste by using all methods available and still would be penalized under this proposed system.

I would like to see industry take the lead in shrinking or changing packaging to help reduce the amount of waste we generate to help citizens, who are encouraged to take part in diversion, composting, and other waste management strategies as well. I look forward to continuing this discussion at the Council table, with all the information needed, to come to a solution that works for all of Ottawa."

Clarke Kelly

Councillor | West Carleton-March

City of Ottawa

Media release from the City:

New garbage policy to be decided by Council

For immediate release:

June 5, 2023

Ottawa – A new policy to reduce unnecessary waste going to landfill, meet provincially mandated diversion targets and increase participation in recycling and green bin programs will rise to City Council for decision on June 14.

The City’s Environment and Climate Change Committee today considered the new policy, which would change curbside garbage collection in Ottawa to a partial pay-as-you-throw program, beginning in Q2 2024. Residents can watch the staff presentation outlining the new policy on the City’s Youtube channel.

"I will not be supporting a tag program," Councillor Kelly said. "I am not on the Environment Committee where this was discussed yesterday. There are 8 motions on the table to change the current proposal. I don't believe the current version of the proposal is fair to rural residents. I will continue to make that known to my colleagues and will certainly be sticking up for my constituents when this comes to the Council table on June 14th."

The Committee received an update on the transition to the new Provincial Blue Box Program, in which producers will be responsible for collecting and processing recyclable materials from eligible sources. The City will transition to the new program beginning on July 1, 2023, with the transition period ending on December 31, 2025.

The City has negotiated an agreement with Circular Materials Ontario to continue collecting recyclables on producers’ behalf throughout the transition period. As a result, residents will see no change to their usual curbside recycling service during the transition. The City will provide status quo collection on the current schedule and continue to handle customer service inquiries.

Staff propose extending the existing curbside collection contract with the current service providers for the transition period. After the transition period, the contracts for organics and waste collection would be extended a further three months, to minimize potential impacts to service and operations.

Items considered at this meeting will rise to Council on Wednesday, June 14.

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