Written by guest blogger Denise Deby, who has worked in international and community development, and is currently trying to figure out how to connect the local with the global in her everyday life.
What do apple cores, sawdust, weeds, cooking oil, kitty litter and empty pizza boxes have in common?
They’re all accepted as part of the City of Ottawa’s Green Bin program.
The City launched the program on September 21, with an event at City Hall, an interactive website, and displays of green bins in public places, like my local library branch and community centre. Collection from green bins doesn’t start until January 2010, but the bins and accompanying white kitchen containers will be delivered to most residents between now and December. Service to some highrise apartments and some rural residents will take a bit longer, according to the City’s website.
The material that the City collects through the Green Bin program will go to an Orgaworld processing plant in southeast Ottawa, where it will be converted into compost. Orgaworld will retain 90 percent of the compost and the City of Ottawa 10 per cent, which it will use for city and community-based greening projects.
The City estimates that currently about 45 percent of garbage by weight of an average Ottawa household consists of compostable organic material that can now go into the green bins, and be reused as compost. Better than going to landfills, if all works as planned.
I was pleasantly surprised by the range of stuff that can be put in green bins, much more than I put in my backyard compost, so I’m looking forward to receiving mine.