We are starting the process right now for a curbside organics program in Winnipeg, but it could take up to 5 years to implement. This is an overview what the program would take to implement and what it could look like.

How long would it take to put an organics collection and composting program in place?

  • It could take up to 2-5 years for the program to start.
  • It could take up to 10 years for the program to reach its full potential.

Why would it take so long?

  • A new facility would need to be built to compost the material:
    • at least 41,000 tonnes of organics from the kitchen waste organics program,
    • at least 25,000 tonnes from the yard waste program.
  • From design to start-up, it typically takes about 18 – 24 months to build a composting facility.

How is this program different from the curbside yard waste collection program?

  • This program is designed only for kitchen organic waste (e.g., fruit and vegetable scraps, coffee grounds).  The material would be collected in a separate container from yard waste.

What would an organics collection and composting program look like for single-family homes?

  • Weekly collection of a green cart (between 60 and 240 litres, depending on the size selected for the program).

How much would the program cost?

  • About $30 – $40 per house per year

Would the program be offered to apartments and condos?

  • Once the program is operating for single-family homes, we will offer the program to property managers of multi-family homes.

What are the benefits of an organics collection and composting program?

  • Keep 41,000 tonnes of organic material out of the landfill each year.
  • Reduce our greenhouse gas by 28,000 tonnes a year.
  • Reduce the long-term cost for managing pollution at the landfill.
  • Significantly increase the lifespan of Brady Landfill.
  • Provide a valuable end-product which could be sold, given away or used in parks and sports fields.

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5 Responses to A Curbside Organics Program for Winnipeg

  1. Holly says:

    Hey Peter, just wondering what the benefit of home composting is over curbside organic pickup?

  2. Rose Russo says:

    I have noticed since the curbside garbage pickup more garbage which have flown of the truck or bins onto the streets, yards and boulevards. Either people are not packaging or bagging the garbage properly or the fact that they have no follow up sanitation workers to pick up the fall out is part of this disgusting problem. As a result our city is looking like a garbage dump or worse like a third world country. I think some kind of notice should be given and perhaps a fine to those homeowners who do not contain their garbage properly. This also should apply to blue boxes. Either that or put back at least 1 sanitation worker to ride the truck to pick up the mess.

  3. Peter says:

    On the collection side, presumably the weekly collection is to address odour problems. These are not an issue for bins kept outside in the winter months, so bi-weekly collection alternating with bi-weekly dry garbage pickup should be sufficient.

    Of course curbside organic pickup should not replace home composting for those able to do it. The city should continue to promote home composting of kitchen waste as the preferable organic solution.

  4. Peter says:

    A potential additional benefit, with anaerobic composting, is the production of methane gas, which could be used for fueling garbage trucks (as in Toronto) or space heating of buildings in the new Brady industrial park or injection into the natural gas mains as is done in several locations.

    The focus here is on residential organics, but there must be a huge volume from restaurants, grocers, and food processers. In addition there is the city's residual biosolids from sewage treatment. Why don't we see a comprehensive plan for treatment of all these waste streams? Presumably you won't have separate facilities for, say, restaurant waste and home kitchen waste.

    • SpeakUpWinnipeg says:

      Peter, the focus is currently on residential, but we are developing strategies for the commercial sector. What facilities for composting organic waste will look like in the future are still to be determined. The plan looks at our waste management over the next 20 years, so all collection, disposal and processing will need to accommodate future outputs.