Residential waste collection schedule to be updated when organics collection begins this spring

News

As Vernon gets ready for curbside organics collection to begin this spring, the City is taking steps to help residents feel prepared to participate in the new service and become aware of other upcoming changes to residential waste collection.

Recently, Mayor Cumming announced all residences that currently receive automated curbside garbage collection will also be part of the organics collection program.

As of May 1, 2022, the City anticipates the organics collection program to begin. Organic materials (household food and yard waste) will be collected weekly. At that same time, residential garbage collection will transition to a bi-weekly service.

The decision to transition to bi-weekly garbage collection was first announced at a Council meeting on December 13, 2021, and has been based on waste management studies in communities similar to Vernon. According to the Compost Council of Canada, approximately one-third of residential waste in British Columbia, is organic kitchen food scraps and yard waste.

“The purpose of the new organics collection program in Vernon is to divert that waste from landfill. Once the organics program begins, we expect to see a reduction in the volume of material being placed in garbage carts. Therefore, weekly garbage collection is expected to be no longer required,” said Mayor Victor Cumming.

Looking at residential waste collection services in other BC municipalities, the City has found encouraging data related to organics waste diversion. Recently, the City of Kamloops reported it diverted 32,500 kgs[1] of organic waste from landfill in the first three weeks of a curbside organics collection pilot program, which began in September 2021.

“This is the kind of positive result we’re looking for in Vernon,” said Mayor Cumming. “It will mean we’re taking specific and practical action on climate change as a whole community. More organics diverted from landfill, mean lower greenhouse gas emissions. It’s as simple as that. Diverting organics will also substantially extend the life of our waste disposal site and considerably lower costs over time.

“The shift to bi-weekly garbage collection makes good economic and environmental sense for Vernon,” he added, indicating the schedule will be set up so there are no additional waste collection trucks on Vernon streets.

More information will be available over the next few months as details about the new scheduling are determined. An updated waste collection schedule will be provided to residents before the changes take place in May.

It’s important to note the City will not be taking requests to change the size of garbage carts at this time. Residents are encouraged to stay tuned to the City’s website and social media channels where more information will be posted as it is finalized.

-30-