Mayonnaise puts the hurt on Toronto's recycling program
Toronto has a big problem on its hand as residents can't seem to figure out how to properly recycle.
The city is in a panic on how to best tackle the problem plaguing the recycling program, particularly with blue bins.
Tons of recycling gets contaminated each year due to improper recycling methods, like putting black plastic containers and half full jars of the fatty vinaigrette spread known as mayo in the bin, resulting in the entire batch being unsuitable for recycling.
In fact, according to the Toronto Star, solid waste general manager Jim McKay recently admitted that putting a half jar of mayonnaise in a blue bin could not only ruin the entire contents of the bin itself but likely the entire contents of the truck that picks it up.
Toronto collects 63 tons of black plastic annually, much in the recycling bin, but it’s not recyclable. It costs the city $9.2 million each year. But we can ask producers to switch to coloured plastic and voila - recyclable. So simple. (Only after reduce and reuse of course)— Mike Layton (@m_layton) April 11, 2018
The persistent problem is putting a huge strain on the city's recycling system as a whole, with contaminated items now making up a quarter of the 200,000 tons of yearly recycling.
I LOVE Toronto so far but I will say that you guys could learn something from Vancouver’s recycling system.— Lauren Donnelly (@actorlbd) April 12, 2018
You know it’s bad when you want to go to Starbucks so that you don’t have to throw your black plastic lid in the trash. 😭
One solution that's been proposed is a "full reasonability model" set forth by the Ontario government that would see each of us responsible for sustainability disposing of our own waste - a model that could take 5 to 10 years to implement.
The other, more immediate solution, has been to issue fines.
Just recently the city sent recycling cops out to poke through bins and issue fines when necessary to any residents who neglected to practice proper recycling.
Hey #Toronto, Our #recycling system (reputed as one of the best around), is under pressure because folks are recycling the wrong stuff.— Rory Capern (@rorycapern) April 12, 2018
👀👇 for a useful tool to remind you of what's recyclable. Getting it wrong undoes the benefit.
A reduction in overall consumption may be where we're ultimately headed, but for now doing your part is as easy as knowing what goes in the bin before you put it in.
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