Bury and Sears: Ottawa should do much better at waste diversion

By Duncan Bury and Meg Sears, Ottawa Citizen, June 24, 2020

COVID-19 notwithstanding, Ottawans’ garbage, paper, plastics, glass, cans and organic waste continue to vanish from the curbside and apartment garbage rooms. Very few of us know or perhaps care about where it all goes, especially with worries over more important things such as our health and financial security.

But care we must. Waste management is an essential service with health, climate, financial and resource efficiency implications that impact us all. What happens to the 362 kilograms of residential waste that, on average, each of us generate per year? This is important; Ottawa households threw out 340,000 tonnes in 2019.

Last year, the city initiated a long-anticipated, sorely needed Solid Waste Master Plan (SWMP) process to guide policies and programs over the next 30 years. Despite COVID-19 challenges to public consultation, the Plan’s Phase 1 studies and a survey seeking public input can all be found on the city’s Engage Ottawa website.


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