Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Green Cart pilot reduces garbage by 40 per cent

Since the Green Cart pilot program launched in early March, household garbage is already down by 40 per cent in the four pilot communities – Abbeydale, Brentwood, Cougar Ridge and Southwood compared to other communities without Green Cart service.

In the first three months of the pilot, residents have already given a second life to 440,000 kilograms of food and yard waste instead of sending it to the landfill.  This is enough material to produce more than 17,000 bags of compost that can be used in a variety of places, including farms, parks and gardens.

“Residents in pilot communities are doing a great job at filling their green carts with their food and yard waste,” says Paula Magdich, Green Cart Program Manager.  “Participants like the idea that all food can be composted as it makes the green cart easy to use.  We’re collecting good material that will produce high quality compost.”

On average, food and yard waste makes up nearly 60 per cent of our household garbage.  By composting food and yard waste, we can reduce dependence on our landfills, minimize the environmental effects of food and yard waste in the landfills, and produce a beneficial product – compost.  It’s also the biggest opportunity to move our city towards diverting 80 per cent of waste from the landfills from the residential sector by 2020.

The pilot aims to provide a convenient service for nearly 7,500 residents by offering weekly collection of all food and yard waste.  Overall, residents have responded favourably to the program and participation continues to grow as we head into the summer months.

Residents’ participation and experience will help inform recommendations for a city-wide program when Waste & Recycling Services reports back to Council in March 2013.

For more information about the Green Cart Food and Yard Waste pilot, visit calgary.ca/greencart or call 3-1-1.

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