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Frequently Asked Questions

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Where do I pick up my Green Bin?
Green bins are available for purchase at the Civic Centre at 19000 Leslie Street. The hours of operation are 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM.
What does 3-stream collection mean?
The 3-stream collection system separates materials into three categories for collection: 1. Source Separated Organics (SSO/ Green Bin) 2. Blue box and 3. Residual waste (black bag garbage). Leaf and yard waste collection will occur bi-weekly, commencing the week of September 17, 2007. Each material stream is managed separately. Green Bin material is transported to a composting facility and Blue Box material is transported to a recycling facility.

What are organics?
SSO's are materials that will break down naturally and turn into compost. This includes material such as food scraps. It also includes less obvious items such as diapers, animal waste and soiled paper food containers.

Will my residual waste (black bag garbage) still be collected weekly?
No. Your residual waste (black bag garbage) collection schedule will change as a result of 3-stream collection. By introducing organic collection and expanding the items accepted in the blue box, there will be a significant reduction in the amount of residual waste (black bag garbage) that is accumulated. As a result, traditional garbage will only need to be collected every other week. Please keep your special collection calendar handy to ensure that the correct material is placed out on the correct week.

I have a large family. How can I hold onto my residual waste (black bag garbage) for two weeks?
By actively participating in both the Green Bin and the Blue Box program you should experience a significant reduction in traditional garbage. Even with a large family, the amount of dry material that need to be stored for two weeks should be minimal. It is suggested that you rinse food trays to prevent odours.

I pay taxes. Is my collection service level changing?
3-stream waste collection increases your waste collection service level. Your green bin and blue box will be collected every week. The left over material will be collected bi-weekly
What if I don't want to participate?
If you choose not to participate, your residual waste (black bag garbage) will still be collected every other week. We encourage everyone to participate in the 3-stream collection program.

Do I have to use a bag to line the Green Bin?
Yes, it is mandatory that all SSO materials be contained within a bag. The Town suggests lining your indoor small container or larger Green Bin with a Certified Compostable plastic bag or kraft paper bag. Source Separated Organics should be contained in a bag to protect the health and safety of the waste collector.

Can I put my leaves and yard material in the Green Bin?
No. If you receive leaf and yard material curbside collection, please continue to use rigid open-top containers (garbage cans, bushel baskets) or kraft paper bags for your yard material. The composting process is different for yard material. Please remember that plastic bags can not be used for leaf and yard material. I already compost and don't want to use my Green Bin. May I do this?
We encourage you to continue backyard composting. However, there are additional items that you can't backyard compost that are accepted in the curbside organics program such as animal waste, meat, fish and diapers.

Are the Green Bins designed to be resistant to dogs, raccoons, etc.?
Yes, the bins are designed to be rodent-proof. The Green Bin has a durable locking lid. However, it is not recommended to leave Green Bins outside where animals have access for prolonged periods of time.

Where is the organic material going?
Organic material is being processed at licensed composting facilities under contract to the Region of York. These facilities are designed to separate out the plastic bags from the composting process and will turn the organic material into clean, rich soil.

What will the finished compost be used for?
The compost will be sold to end market users where it will be used for various purposes including farming and landscaping.