Kudos to council on garbage decision from NWEP

I promised an update on automated waste collection, and it is (almost) all good news! Council passed a motion on Monday that represents an improvement (from an environmental sustainability and solid-waste-diversion perspective) over the recommendation from staff presented to the Environmental Advisory Committee last week.

I promised an update on automated waste collection, and it is (almost) all good news!

Council passed a motion on Monday that represents an improvement (from an environmental sustainability and solid-waste-diversion perspective) over the recommendation from staff presented to the Environmental Advisory Committee last week.

I paraphrase slightly, but Council requested that the 120L bin be the default size for mixed waste and that 240L be the default size for Clean Green waste (this is the staff recommendation), but then they put a cherry on top by suggesting that the administrative fee for size switches be waived if one is switching to a smaller bin, and that the annual charge for choosing the larger bin be indexed to tippage fees: the more the City pays to dump your trash, the more you pay for having a large bin.

Kudos to Council for taking these progressive measures. Extra Kudos to Councillor McIntosh for proposing (and Councillors McEvoy and Cote for supporting) a 120L option for Clean Green Bins. Hopefully, staff will find a way before the roll-out of the Clean Green bins to come back with a proposal to offer this 120L option, as it seems appropriate for us backyard composters and those with smaller lots.

The New Westminster Environmental Partners will stay involved in this process. Hopefully, Council and Staff will take the NWEP up on our offer to help with the education part of the Clean Green bin roll-out. We also have some great ideas on how to work on waste reduction at New Westminster’s numerous multi-family dwellings. More exciting news surrounds New Westminster’s first Neighbourhood Zero Waste Challenge, taking place on a block of Colborne Street.

For info on all or any of these, or if you have ideas or opinions about garbage, or any other aspect of New Westminster’s environment, check out the NWEP website.

Now I have to finish tearing up my front yard and get some carrots in the ground…

Pat Johnstone

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