New Green Bin Program Launches

full bike rack

Green Bin on City street with collection truck

Peterborough, ON - City of Peterborough waste collection service changes launched on October 31, 2023 with a new weekly Green Bin service, bi-weekly garbage collection, and requiring the use of clear bags without bins for curbside garbage collection. Recycling collection remains on a weekly schedule.

The first collection day saw strong uptake on the new program, with approximately 85% of eligible households in the Tuesday collection area placing their Green Bin to the curb for pick up.

Some residents who did not put out their Green Bin told waste collection workers that they were holding their Green Bin until next week to accumulate more organic material before setting the Green Bin curbside.

The requirement to use clear garbage bags is also being implemented successfully, with approximately 80% of households in Tuesday’s collection area using clear bags.

“Congratulations Peterborough! Today we are a greener community thanks to the remarkable uptake of the new Green Bin program and garbage collection changes. We’re diverting more waste from the landfill, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and improving workers safety,” said Councillor Gary Baldwin, Chair of the City’s Waste Management Portfolio. “These are big changes for our community, and it’s going to take some time for everyone to get into a new routine. We appreciate everyone’s efforts and will continue to support residents as they learn the new waste management expectations.”

New Waste Collection Program Details

Garbage set out requirements

  • Garbage bags cannot be inside bins or pails when placed at the curb
  • Clear garbage bags are mandatory for all City addresses, with up to 3 privacy bags (maximum size 25 litres or 5.5 imperial gallons) permitted inside each clear bag
  • weight limits must not exceed a weight of 13.6 kg (30 lbs)
  • Every-other-week-garbage collection, except in the Downtown Business Improvements Association (DBIA) area that maintains its existing schedule
  • maximum number lifts for property:
    • Six or fewer units: four bags per unit
    • Six or fewer units and at least one business unit: four bags per unit plus twelve bags for the business
    • Property comprised exclusively of one or more business units: twelve bags per property (not per unit)
    • Property within the DBIA: six bags per property, twice per week

Green Bins

Green Bins will be collected weekly for all properties that are included in the first phase of the program, including single-detached homes and multi-residential properties with 6 or less residences.

Green Bins are collected using a mechanical truck arm, therefore a minimum of two-feet clearance space is required around the bin. Please ensure Green Bins are placed near the curb with the arrow pointing toward the street, at least two feet away from other items, including blue boxes and garbage bags.

Full details on set out instructions and what is included in the Green Bin organics program are online at www.peterborough.ca/GreenBin.

Recycling

Blue box collection of recyclable material remains unchanged and continue weekly on the same day as Green Bin collection.

Yard Waste

Yard waste will continue to be collected at the curb seasonally between April and November as follows:

  • Must weigh less than 13 kg (30 lbs)
  • Must be in a yard waste container or bundled, do not place yard waste in the Green Bin
  • Brush can be tied in bundles with light rope or twine, weighing not more than 13 kg (30 lbs), with a length of up to 1 m (3 ft) and a diameter of up to 30 cm (12 inches)
  • Kraft paper bags, or bushel basket are acceptable
  • Bins with a maximum volume of 80 L, with 2 fixed handles and removable lids. Bins must have two clearly identifiable labels attached defining the contents as “Green Waste”. Labels are available free of charge at City Hall, 500 George St. N.
  • Yard Waste material must empty freely when emptied/dumped by the collector.
  • No other type of bin will be collected (including blue boxes). No plastic bags or  broken bins will be accepted

Collection schedule changes

To help ensure that waste collection services can continue to be delivered on schedule as the community continues to grow and to improve worker safety by balancing collection routes, weekly waste collection have changed for approximately 8,200 households. Notices were hand delivered to affected residents, and an online tool is available at www.peterborough.ca/WasteApp for residents to check their collection day.

Waste Collection By-Law

The updated Waste Collection By-Law establishes the requirements for collection of garbage, organic waste, recyclable materials, and yard waste in line with the Waste Management Master Plan. The new by-law introduces enforcement tools to address by-law contraventions.

The City’s approach will be to inform and educate residents during the early stages of this new program. The goal is to support the community throughout the implementation. Eventually the new rules will the enforced, and items that are not in clear bags, or items in garbage cans will be left at the curb. In extreme cases of non-compliance, fines may be issued.

The changes support the safe implementation of the new programs outlined in the City’s recent Waste Management Master Plan update targeting a residential Diversion rate of 75%.