In the Fall 2017, City Council made a commitment to increase residential waste diversion from the current 45% (by weight) to 60% by the end of 2022. In order to achieve this, a 60% Waste Diversion Action Plan ("Action Plan") has been developed which includes over 20 different actions to achieve 60% waste diversion. Actions include reducing food waste, using a Green Bin, increasing recycling options for furniture and textiles, etc. The Action Plan is part of the City's overall long term Resource Recovery Plan.
The Action Plan builds on previous waste diversion planning initiatives reports - Road Map 1.0: A Road Map to Maximize Waste Diversion (2007) and Road Map 2.0: The Road to Increased Resource Recovery and Zero Waste (2013) and the Interim Waste Diversion Plan 2014-2015 (2014) which guided the path to where we are today.
City Council approved the 60% Waste Diversion Action Plan on September 25, 2018.
The City of London’s Waste Management System is based on a Continuous Improvement Strategy (management philosophy) and Sustainable Waste Management. This strategy, which was approved by Municipal Council in 1997, has been the foundation for going forward. It uses an active framework that recognizes integrated waste management as an important environmental service in the community. By effectively allocating financial and human resources, this environmental service contributes to the protection of human health and the environment. By supporting an integrated system of waste reduction (i.e., not producing waste in the first place), recovery of materials that can be recycled and composted, and ensuring that what remains is handled in an environmentally responsible manner, this strategy provides the mechanism for continuous improvement of the waste management system. Since this strategy was approved over fifteen years ago, the City of London has steadily increased its performance to the current level of 44% waste diversion while having one of the lowest total waste management costs in Ontario for urban centres (based on statistics compiled by the Ontario Municipal Benchmarking Initiative – OMBI).
The Road Map 2.0 – The Road to Increased Resource Recovery and Zero Waste – continues from the earlier report - Road Map 1.0: A Road Map to Maximize Waste Diversion (2007) - which guided the path to bring us to where we are today.
Program / Initiative Implementation Schedule from Road Map 2.0:
• Northend EnviroDepot (complete)
• Delay Green Bin decision until new, emerging and next generation resource recovery review (complete)
• Provide residents of newly constructed homes with two Blue Boxes at no cost
• Establish a multi-residential recycling cart purchase program that sells roll-out carts at cost
• Add vegetable oil and used motor oil to EnviroDepots (in progress)
• Add hot/cold beverage cups, ice cream containers & blister packaging to the Blue Box program
Further Investigation 2014 to 2015
• Provide bin cardboard collection at multi-residential buildings
• Start downtown cardboard collection
• Increase access to recycling in public spaces
• Facilitate purchase of recycling services for Business Improvement Areas / commercial areas
• Target education & awareness programs for selected Blue Box materials
• Increase education and awareness funding (as budgets permit) and/or in-kind services to
implement new incentive programs (e.g., reward programs such as the Gold Box) and/or other
• Explore source reduction of food waste
• Examine the role of community composting
Further investigation 2016 to 2019
• Sell Blue Boxes at the EnviroDepots at cost (complete)
• Add single use batteries and metal cookware to the Blue Box program
• Provide replacement Blue Boxes to residents
• Add paint, expanded foam polystyrene (StyrofoamTM), carpets and mattresses to EnviroDepots
• Increase home composting opportunity
• Begin curbside collection of Christmas trees (in progress)
• Ban curbside garbage collection of Christmas trees (in progress)
• Explore a reduced bag limit with user pay system for extra garbage (complete)
• Begin semi-annual curbside collection of electronics, scrap metal and batteries
Delayed – Future Consideration
• Add plastic bags and film plastic, expanded foam polystyrene (StyrofoamTM) and textiles to the
• Add plastic bags and film plastic to the EnviroDepots
• Examine full User Pay for garbage
• Mandatory Recycling Bylaw (with and without clear bags for garbage)
Waste Diversion Resources
For more information on the waste diversion of London and other municipalities in Ontario, visit Resource Productivity & Recovery Authority. For more information on improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the Blue Box program in Ontario municipalities, visit Continuous Improvement Fund.