Photo of Green Bin courtesy of © Can Stock Photo Inc. / TheModernCanvasPhoto of Green Bin courtesy of © Can Stock Photo Inc. / TheModernCanvas

Green bin program possible in CK

Chatham-Kent is generating more waste than ever and there will come a time when there won't be anywhere to put it.

An information report from the municipality's Waste Management Department showed that a curbside, organic waste program could be a solution to that problem.

According to Huda Oda, CK's Manager of Waste Management, municipal waste directed to area landfills increased by 25 per cent in 2021 when compared to 2015. Of that, about 32 per cent is organic, meaning food or yard waste.

The province's Food and Organic Waste Policy Statement, issued in 2018 and updated in 2021, requires that municipalities collect food and organic waste from single-family homes in urban areas with a target of reducing food and organic waste in half by 2025. This led to many communities across Ontario, including neighbouring communities in London and Windsor, adopting curbside green bin programs.

On Monday, Oda told councillors that the municipality must have a diversion program in place by next year.

"It doesn't have to be a curbside program," she said, but if Chatham-Kent's solution doesn't include curbside pickup provincial targets won't be met.

Oda added that a feasibility study into an organics diversion program will have three objectives:

1. Develop a curbside green bin program for Chatham-Kent's urban settlements.

2. Investigate the value of a backyard home composter program.

3. Explore the value and practicality of a rural organics diversion system, which may include depot collection of household organics from non-curbside residents.

In the late 2000s, Chatham-Kent offered backyard composters to residents at cost, but the program had limited success and was discontinued.

Waste Management does intend to review best practices and get public input before recommending a final, sustainable green bin program to council.

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