With so many aspects of our daily life recalibrating during the COVID-19 pandemic, it can be soothing to swing into the rhythm of our daily habits—anything familiar can help keep us grounded and calm these days.
Compiling your household trash and getting the kids to sort through your recycling bins may just be some of your go-to’s, and that doesn’t have to change. There are some adjustments, though, that will make managing our community’s so-called “waste” much more streamlined. Here’s how you can contribute and benefit.
As recycling depots are changing hours and limiting the number of people inside, and Augusta Recyclers has closed the recycling depot side of its operations altogether, curbside recycling is becoming more appealing. More and more residents living within the city limits (Wildwood, Townsite, Cranberry and Westview) are starting to take advantage of the incredibly convenient biweekly curbside recycling and weekly garbage pickup services.
It’s true that not all recyclables are accepted curbside, but luckily most of the bulkier ones are. Both the container and paper recycling streams are collected curbside and these can all be placed in the same bin. No need for anything fancy—even a cardboard box or laundry basket will do—just don’t use a plastic bag. You can find a complete list for both curbside and the expanded list of materials accepted at depots in the Waste Wise Guide.
In short, the container stream includes packaging (as opposed to a product) that is made of plastic, metal or paper. The paper stream includes newspaper, magazines, phone books, boxboard boxes, molded cardboard egg cartons, paper bags and the like. Larger quantities of cardboard should be tied into bundles and placed next to your bin.
Curbside garbage usually requires a $2 garbage bag tag sticker on each garbage bag, but City Operational Services has lifted this requirement effective March 20in the interest of supporting provincial health officer directives. Before you start clearing out your entire garage, note that it is only the first two garbage bags that are free, and they should weigh under 26.5 pounds each.
One great way to lighten your garbage is to remove food scraps. Composting is the best way to make use of food scraps and several free compost programs exist in town, though the curbside option for this is still in a pilot project phase and only for a handful of houses.
If you are finding you have more time for spring projects, creating your own backyard composter is a fantastic one. There are many styles from the converted freezer composter to the pallet bin, and bokashi fermentation to vermiculture. The Let’s Talk Trash website composting resources is a great place to start.
Worried about missing the garbage or recycling truck as it passes through? Go online to the City or qathet Regional District websites to sign up for a free reminder by text, email or phone message before pickup day.
Stay safe out there.