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Committee OKs curbside compost pilot

Geer said there will be an extensive public consultation initiative with participating homes that will each recieve a curbside cart, kitchen container and educational material. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press files)</p>

Geer said there will be an extensive public consultation initiative with participating homes that will each recieve a curbside cart, kitchen container and educational material. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press files)

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 28/11/2019 (218 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

WINNIPEG is inching closer to curbside composting pickup service.

Councillors on the environment committee Thursday unanimously approved a two-year pilot project set to get underway by September 2020. Four thousand homes will be chosen to participate.

Compost pickup would occur on same day as regular garbage and recycling collection.  (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press files)

Compost pickup would occur on same day as regular garbage and recycling collection. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press files)

"We’re getting it done. This has been a long time coming," Coun. Cindy Gilroy, chairwoman of the committee, told reporters. "This has been something the city has lagged on."

The proposal still requires city council approval. If approved, the water and waste department will be required to report back to council before the pilot begins, identifying the chosen routes.

While Winnipeg is the last remaining regional city to have a curbside composting program, the concept generated some controversy when it was proposed more than a year ago. Opponents saw it as unnecessary because many homes are already doing backyard composting.

The cost of the $1.8-million pilot would be financed from the city’s waste diversion reserve account, with no cost to participating homes. However, Thursday’s report states if a citywide rollout is worthy, a user fee would be charged to all homes, including those that had participated in the pilot.

Moira Geer, director of water and waste, said using diversion reserve funds will not affect operating revenue nor other services provided by the department.

Geer said the department still has to determine which areas of the city will participate in the pilot, and devise five different routes.

Gilroy said while many other communities have operated such a service for years, a pilot program was necessary, adding the department will use the data collected to build a business case to find alternative sources of funding.

"You have to walk before you run," the Daniel McIntyre councillor said.

Geer said there will be an extensive public consultation initiative with participating homes that will each receive a curbside cart, kitchen container and educational material. Compost pickup would occur on same day as regular garbage and recycling collection.

The material will be processed at the Brady Road landfill composting facility.

Coun. Markus Chambers said the pilot could result in a reduction of household garbage waste, adding he believes the move could cut garbage pickup to a biweekly basis.

Thursday’s report notes a citywide service would require $17 million for purchase of carts and kitchen containers, $25 million to $58 million for the construction of a composting facility, an annual operating budget of $4.6 million for curbside pickup, and $5 million annual operating costs for the facility.

Geer said the pilot will determine if homes in the pilot are complying with the allowable materials to be collected and what percentage of homes in the pilot area are actively participating.

 

aldo.santin@freepress.mb.ca

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History

Updated on Thursday, November 28, 2019 at 5:18 PM CST: Changes art.

November 29, 2019 at 8:47 AM: Updated

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