Keeping our streets clean
These sleek litter bins, supplied by Astral Media Outdoor, are replacing the older style of bins as part of Toronto's co-ordinated street furniture program. The bins are designed to reduce litter and increase recycling in public areas. They have three separate compartments to accept garbage, recyclable paper, and containers such as soft drink cans and bottles. The flap openings to each compartment are activated by a common foot pedal. There's no need to touch the flap, making it so easy to dispose of such small items as chewing gum. Each bin is also equipped to accept tobacco products safe. Smokers are asked to use these receptacles to butt out instead of littering. Under the new program, there will be many more thousands of public bins across the city.
As well as providing us the opportunity to recycle on the go, the bins provide a number of other benefits, including the improved aesthetics of a clean design that harmonizes with other street furniture. The units are maintained by Astral and the City's Solid Waste Management Services division collects the material.
Results of Toronto's 2012 litter audit
In August 2012, the City of Toronto contracted Environmental Resources Planning, LLC to conduct a citywide litter audit to gauge the rate, extent and composition of litter within City-maintained areas. The type of litter measured was classified as either "Large Litter" (four square inches or more) and "Small Litter" (less than four square inches). The 2012 audit results indicate there is less litter than observed in 2006. Large litter items were reduced by almost 21% and Small Litter items decreased by 67% in comparison with 2006 data.
Details, including information on the measurement of branded litter, are provided in the full report "2012 Toronto Streets Litter Audit" (PDF, 3.5 MB). The City had previously conducted four citywide litter audits in 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006 using the same methodology, which allowed comparison of each audit's results (see previous year's results below).
Results of Toronto's 2006 litter audit
Once you butt out, butt in. Smokers, put your butts in the ashtray and cigarette packs in the bin.
You can pop it in the bin. Recycle your pop cans.
Roll up to the bin and toss it in. Everyone's drinking coffee on the go - make sure your cup ends up in the bin.
Don't make yesterday's news tomorrow's trash. The real news would be if we all recycled our newspapers.
Gum shoe blues. Aim for the bin, not the sidewalk.
Fast food = fast litter. Put the brakes on fast food litter.
Dial "L" for litter. Program your cell's speed dial to 311 to report litter hot spots.
Everybody needs a pick-me-up. Pledge to pick up one piece of litter daily.
Bin there, do that. With thousands of bins out there, just walk those few extra steps.
Talking trash is okay. Remind family, friends, kids and colleagues not to litter.
Don't Trash Toronto.
Smokers, please make proper use of the cigarette butt receptacles on each of the street furniture style litter/recycling bins. Cigarette butts make up a large part of Toronto's litter and they can take up to 12 years to break down.
Let's Clean Toronto Together
Thank you Toronto residents, schools, businesses and City staff who participated in Clean Toronto Together!
Thousands of residents helped clean and green parks, school grounds and public spaces at hundreds of corporate, school and community clean-ups around the city on April 19, 20 & 21, 2013.
Staff from various City divisions, agencies, boards and commissions also participated in a 4-week Inter-divisional Spring Clean-Up in April. The collaboration of City staff, residents, community groups, schools and businesses resulted in:
- approximately 6,000 tonnes of litter and debris being removed from arterial roads, parks, school grounds and public spaces
- 6, 500 square meters of graffiti were cleaned and removed from public property
- 7, 000 illegal posters were removed
- 1, 355 trees were pruned
- 205 dead trees were removed
It is the collaboration of City staff, residents, community groups, schools and businesses that made Clean Toronto Together 2013 a great success. Thank you all!
Remember to be safe when you’re on the hunt for litter.
- Wear appropriate and protective clothing (boots, gloves, etc.).
- Wear a hat or sunscreen if necessary.
- Pick up litter in your gloved hand and carry your bag in the other.
- Do not pick up strange articles that may be dangerous. Don't pick up anything that looks sharp (i.e. used needles).
- Do not take any risks attempting to reach litter in hard-to-get-to places (up a tree, down a steep incline, in rapidly flowing water, on slippery surfaces, etc.).
Looking for more ways to get involved in keeping our City clean, green and healthy year-round?
Check out Live Green Toronto.