March 29, 2017
The City of Toronto will launch its 26th season of Community Environment Days on Saturday, April 1. These events, hosted by local councillors, help residents do their part in creating a cleaner, greener and more livable city.
Held annually between April and October in each of Toronto's 44 wards, Community Environment Days allow residents to correctly and safely dispose of household items that do not belong in the City's Blue Bin and Green Bin diversion programs, such as household hazardous waste, home healthcare waste and electronic waste. The events also provide an opportunity to bring specific items for donation and reuse. Free compost is available for pickup at the events (with a maximum of about an average car trunk load per household), and residents are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items that will be donated to a food bank.
More than 26,000 people attended Community Environment Days last year. Items dropped off included electronics, household hazardous waste, reusable household goods, art supplies, books and clothing in good condition. A total of 123 kilograms of food was donated.
"Community Environment Days are an opportunity for residents to learn how to properly participate in the City's waste diversion programs and do their part to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill by ensuring items are disposed of properly or donated," said Councillor Jaye Robinson (Ward 25 Don Valley West), Chair of the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee.
Attendees can also learn about new waste diversion initiatives that are being planned as part of the City Council-approved Long-Term Waste Management Strategy.
"Contamination in the Blue Bin recycling program is an increasing problem," said Jim McKay, General Manager, Solid Waste Management Services. "In 2015, approximately 44,000 tonnes of garbage and food waste was mixed with recycling. High levels of contamination are problematic for a number of reasons, including rejection of whole loads of otherwise good recyclable material that ends up in landfill, increased processing costs, workplace injuries and damaged equipment. Reducing contamination by about five per cent could save the City approximately $2 million annually."
Community Environment Days are a partnership between Solid Waste Management Services, Toronto Water, Environment and Energy, and Orange Drop (Ontario's Municipal Hazardous and Special Waste program).
A full list of event dates and more information about what to bring is available at http://www.toronto.ca/environment_days, or by calling 311.
This news release is also available on the City of Toronto website at http://ow.ly/Xpe730anlp9.
Toronto is Canada's largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world's most livable cities. In 2017, Toronto will honour Canada's 150th birthday with "TO Canada with Love," a year-long program of celebrations, commemorations and exhibitions. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit http://www.toronto.ca, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/TorontoComms and on Instagram at http://www.instagram.com/cityofto.
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