About 11 years after it was first discussed and about nine years since the program was first piloted, the city officially rolled out its new green bin program yesterday.
“We’re a very cautious city,” said Coun. Peter Hume.
Still, Hume — who introduced the idea to the city more than a decade ago — believes “the citizens of Ottawa will embrace the program,” which involves collecting residential organic waste and turning it into compost.
Starting in River Ward yesterday and over the next 12 weeks, the city will deliver 240,000 green bins and smaller kitchen containers to most homes. Collection begins in the new year.
According to Hume, about 45 per cent of the waste that currently ends up in the garbage is compostable.
The program will cost the city $17 million — which breaks down to $68 per household per year, or $1.30 per pickup — but it will save taxpayers money in the long run, said Hume. The program will allow the city to extend the life of its Trail Road landfill from about 12 to 40 years.
The program also produces valuable compost and reduces greenhouse gases, said Rod Muir of Sierra Club of Canada.