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Richmond Hill Has Best Year Ever - February 28, 2012

Contact: George Flint, 905-771-2455, gflint@richmondhill.ca  


RICHMOND HILL HAS BEST YEAR EVER!
Award-Winning Waste Management Program Achieves Its Best Ever Waste Diversion Rate


RICHMOND HILL – The results are in, and in 2011, Richmond Hill achieved its best waste diversion results ever! With the participation of residents, the community put 68.2% of its waste out for recycling and composting programs instead of sending it to landfill.

“Richmond Hill residents continue to show their commitment to the community and to protecting the environment by enthusiastically participating in our waste reduction programs,” said Mayor Dave Barrow. “Through the Blue Box, Green Bin and yard waste programs, Richmond Hill residents put out more than 39,000 tonnes of recyclable and organic material - that’s equal to 3,800 fewer garbage trucks!”

In 2011, residents put out for collection 27.9% Blue Box material, 28.1% Green Bin material and 12% yard waste, with appliances and e-waste accounting for less than 1% each. Only the remaining 31.8 % of material was put out as waste.

This achievement is due in part to the recent expansion of the GoingGREEN program to multi-residential buildings. The new GoingUP organics collection program was introduced to 20 new buildings in 2011, some of which have reduced their waste to landfill by half after just one year. Approximately one third of all multi-residential units in Richmond Hill now have access to organics collection. The program will be introduced in another 10 buildings in 2012.

“We’ve got about 80 high rise buildings containing more than 9,000 units in Richmond Hill,” added the Mayor. “With each additional building having access to Green Bin collection, we divert more and more waste from landfill.”

In addition to the expansion to multi-residential buildings, York Region’s new Elgin Mills Community Environmental Centre (1124 Elgin Mills Road East in Richmond Hill) provides a convenient one-stop location for residents and small businesses to drop off a variety of materials for reuse, recycling or disposal.

Richmond Hill’s commitment to waste reduction was also recognized with two awards in 2011. The first award, a Municipal Unique Program Award from the Recycling Council of Ontario recognizes Richmond Hill’s high rise waste electronics collection program - a partnership between the Town and Toronto Recycling Inc. In 2011, 19 tonnes of e-waste was collected from high rise buildings through this program. The second award, a Silver Award for Best Promotion and Education Campaign from the Municipal Waste Association was received for the GoingUP promotional program.

Richmond Hill continues to explore new methods to reduce waste and divert materials from landfill. In 2012, recycling opportunities in parks, town facilities & public spaces will increase, staff will explore opportunities for leadership and support of waste diversion in the local Industrial, Commercial & Institutional sector, and will continue to work with the Region of York and its local municipal partners on the development of an Integrated Waste Management Master Plan.

For more information about Richmond Hill’s Waste Management Programs, visit RichmondHill.ca/WasteManagement.
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