The Ottawa Green Bin Program

As an environmentally friendly house cleaning service, we’re advocates of Ottawa’s green bin program. We advocate any effort that reduces waste and reduces toxicity in our environment. We ask our house cleaning clients to let us know where they store their green bins, their city provided compost boxes, and whether they compost organic waste because as a company, we firmly believe in the initiative. In any of our housecleaning visits, prepping and properly disposing of organic waste is part of a standard kitchen cleaning. In recent weeks, the program has been getting some negative attention as a result of the city’s 20 year commitment with Orgaworld to pay for the processing of 80,000 tonnes of organic waste a year, regardless of whatever it collects (the city collected about 53,000 tonnes in it’s first year). These kinds of projects – where the behaviors of many people are required to change over time – need time to ramp up. Education about the program is also a requirement. The entire concept was a response to another municipal problem that the city has – the increasing size of landfills. Regardless of your opinion on the green bin program or it’s implementation by city council, long term, this is a great solution for the city. We wanted to share some information on the green bin program, and why, if you’re not composting, you may want to consider doing it.

  • Up to 75% of household garbage is derived from organic matter and most of it can be composted. It’s the natural way to recycle and the result is a better soil fertilizer than any store bought product.
  • This natural fertilizer has multiple environmental and agricultural applications that can be used locally for farms, parks, and other areas.
  • Expanding landfills affect property values with surrounding homes and communities. With a growing city, there is more garbage. More garbage means growing landfills.
  • Using compost reduces the amount of fertilizer, water, and pesticides needed to produce healthy plants, and it is cheaper than artificial soils.
  • Environmentally, the use of compost has been shown to remediate, or clean up, contaminated soils by reducing toxic runoffs, binding certain toxins that might otherwise escape, and it prevents erosion when used near roadways, lakes, rivers, and streams.
  • Composting on a city level has long term savings. The cost associated with moving the Carp road landfill were estimated to be about $100 million dollars when the city considered moving it when surrounding residents indicated their displeasure with living near a dump.
  • Composting programs have proven very successful in cities like Halifax, Vancouver, and Guelph, where they’ve curbed waste in landfills by up to 65% and introduced nationally recognized waste management efficiencies into city operations that have contributed to better environmental conditions and that have quantifiable long term city running effects.

As one of Ottawa’s premier house cleaning services, we’re committed to creating awareness about the realities of waste in you home and it’s effect on the health of our families. Taking the environment into consideration is easier than you think. Contact us to schedule a booking for your house cleaning or request a quote.

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2 responses to “The Ottawa Green Bin Program”

  1. anthony says:

    We (Ottawa) pays for the green bins.
    We pay for the pick-up of the waste.
    We pay a private company to process the waste.
    The private company sells off the result for profit.

    This is the worst implementation of a mediocre idea ever. This is like paying Rumplestilskin to turn our straw into gold and letting him keep the gold afterwords.

  2. admin says:

    Thanks for your comment Anthony….that’s an interesting perspective. The green bin is a controversial concept, that’s for sure.

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