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How Much Is Your Garbage Worth?

The city is about to roll out a new garbage collection plan that will charge residents a fee directly based on the amount of garbage they throw out. The plan, which was proposed in early April, is finally ready for approval by city council. They've come up with a fee schedule that looks like this:

- a 75 L bin will cost $209 a year (equal to one large garbage bag);
- a 120 L bin will cost $250;
- a 240 L bin will cost $310; and
- a 360 L bin will cost $360 (that's FIVE full bags of garbage)

Photo by Flickrite gabe.toth.

The new system will begin immediately in 2500 households in Toronto. But critics are moaning about how the plan only targets residential homeowners, and they feel time and resources should be spent on getting apartment buildings and other multiple family housing units recycling and composting more. Well, they are working on that, aren't they? Plus, the revenue from this new collection plan will go to developing more and better recycling and composting systems for apartments. It's also a step in the right direction; Mayor Miller wants to bump up our garbage diversion rate (from landfills) from 42% to 70% by they year 2010.

I have a feeling there will be a lot of angry homeowners out there, who will see this simply as more money they have to pay out with no automatic compensation (the estimated increase is $62). But once the plan is in place, I think the forced limitations on garbage production will open their eyes to a different lifestyle; one that finally strays from the consumerist gluttony we all experienced in the 80s and 90s. It still shocks me when I hear some people are not recycling.

Other criticisms include the "headache implementation will cause" and the fact that the bins are ugly and big. Come on. Isn't everything to do with city council a headache? And you're putting your GARBAGE into these bins, not some flowers, or some punch. It doesn't need to be pretty, it just needs to be effective.


REUSE, REDUCE, RECYCLE, REAP THE REWARDS.

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