Solid Waste Management Services

Divisional Information

Garbage truck on a residential street lifting a blue recycling bin

By-laws

Solid Waste Fees, Collections, Packaging, Waste Transfer and Landfill By-laws, and Littering and Dumping of Refuse By-law

Inside a Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) depot

Reports

Waste diversion reports and studies

Services to Residents and Businesses

Blue and green bins set out on a residential street

Houses

General information and collection calendars

Private car entering a drop-off depot

Drop-off Depots

Dispose of household hazardous waste, electronics, renovation waste, tires, etc. Garbage, recycling and yard waste can be also be dropped off — see a list of accepted items.

Initiatives

  

Household Hazardous Waste

Four of the City's six HHW depot sites are also HHW reuse depots. Toronto residents can either drop off or pick up the following items for reuse: paints, cleaning products, wood, stains, solvents and lubricants. More...

Practise your 3Rs on the go!

Keep up the good work you do at home to reduce, reuse and recycle by making good use of the many street recycling/garbage bins available across the City. Each bin features receptacles for butting out cigarettes for safe disposal. Stepping on the foot pedal activates the flap opening making it easy to properly dispose of chewing gum.

Community Environment Days

Clean out your basement, closets and garage of all the items you no longer use. Sporting goods, clothing, books, small household appliances and computer equipment) as well as hazardous waste items - they can all be brought to a Community Environment Day near you.

The City of Toronto will recycle, divert and even donate these items! You can also pick-up water-saving kits, composters, recycling bins, yard waste containers and leaf compost.

Composting

Compost, yard waste and lawns are all organic substances, and they all factor "organically" into the City's waste reduction program. Examples of organics include the grass on your lawn, tree leaves, plant roots, stems, blooms and leaves from your garden flowers, fruit or vegetable plantings, hedge or shrub trimmings, and compost itself.

Yellow Bag Program

The Yellow Bag Program is a waste management initiative that encourages Toronto's commercial customers to decrease garbage while increasing recycling and organics collection. It also harmonizes commercial waste collection services across the City.

Litter

Litter audits, tips, street bins for garbage, recycling, cigarette butts, etc.

ReUseIt

Not-for-profit groups use donations for clients or by reselling them to fund programs. You can support these organizations in two ways: donate reusable items and shop at their retail operations.

2015 Residential Diversion Rates

In 2015, a total of 405,392 tonnes of residential waste was diverted from landfill through such programs as the Blue Bin recycling, Green Bin organics, Yard Waste and Christmas trees, backyard composting, Community Environment Days, Household Hazardous Waste, grass cycling, large appliance/scrap metal and electronic waste pick-up.

The combined residential diversion rate of 52% represents the diverted tonnage achieved by both single-family homes and multi-unit residential buildings (categorized as having 9 or more units). Residents living in single-family homes had a diversion rate of 65%. Multi-unit residential building residents improved their diversion, achieving a rate of 27% (compared to 26% in 2014). 

In 2016, work continues to finalize the City's Long Term Waste Management Strategy which includes options that emphasize the 3Rs (reduce, reuse and recycle) and a continued focus on improving multi-residential waste diversion. The initial rollout of the new automated Green Bins for single-family customers will also begin in the eastern area of the City.

The City is committed to improving waste reduction and diversion efforts to move towards the goal of achieving 70% waste diversion which will preserve the capacity of our Green Lane Landfill. This year will see the finalization of the Long Term Waste Management Strategy that will provide a framework for policy decisions over the next 30 to 50 years and guide the City in methods to further reduce, reuse and recycle our waste prior to final disposal.

2015 breakdown by material of residential waste diversion

2015 Residential Waste Diversion

ProgramWaste Collected
(tonnes)
Waste Diverted
(tonnes)
Diversion Rate
Single Family Residential

178,984

335,101

65%

Multi-Unit Residential

190,884

70,291

27%

Total Residential

369,868

405,392

52%

 

Diversion Summary 2015

ProgramTonnes
Blue Bin Program

 127,952

Leaf/Yard/Christmas trees

  91,164

Backyard Composting

  19,249

Green Bin (Organics)

 105,756

Environment Days/Depots

       816

Large Appliances/Scrap Metal

    4,718

Grasscycling

  18,233

Household Hazardous Waste

    2,336

Electronics

    1,065

Deposit Return and Stewardship Program

  14,902

Tires

  19,202

Diversion in Tonnes

 405,392

Waste

 369,868

Diversion and Waste

 775,260

Percentage Diversion

      52%

2008-2015 summary of waste diversion rates

  2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008
Residential waste diversion Tonnes Tonnes Tonnes Tonnes Tonnes Tonnes Tonnes Tonnes
Blue Bin (recycling) Program 127,952 141,206 143,935 148,336 146,538 147,236 139,757 158,747
Leaf/yard Waste 91,164 96,068 99,822 92,474 84,297 82,470 82,084 82,766
Backyard composting 19,249 19,179 19,120 19,045 18,970 18,899 18,826 18,739
Green Bin (organics) 105,756 106,040 111,848 105,491 100,663 92,715 84,674 94,201
Environment Days/Depots/Reuse Centre 816 1,681 3,610 2,119 2,713 1,992 1,455 900
Electronics 1,065 937 849 979 1,719 1,834 1,095 910

Large Appliances

Scrap Metal

4,718 3,826 3,290 2,860 3,641 4,238 4,983 4,837
Grasscycling* 18,233 19,214 19,964 18,095 17,116 16,054 15,977 12,085
Household Hazardous Waste 2,336 1,844 1,622 1,531 1,544 1,563 1,175 1,162
Deposit Return & Stewardship Program 14,902 14,779 14,655 14,532 14,409 13,889 13,865 13,841
Tires 19,202 19,043 20,507 18,726 - - - -
Diversion in Tonnes 405,392 423,817 439,222 424,188 391,610 380,890 363,891 388,188

Waste

369,868 380,522 383,521 391,262 408,202 432,539 470,379 494,539
Diversion & Waste 775,260 804,369 823,743 815,450 799,812 813,429 834,270 882,727
Percentage Diversion 52% 53% 53% 52% 49% 47% 44% 44%
                 

NOTES:

  • * Grasscycling – estimated amounts that are left on lawns since clippings are not collected.
  • Green Bin (source separated organics) rolled out to single family households between 2002 and 2005.
  • 2007 - A certain amount of yard waste remained on the ground due to early snowfall and therefore was not collected in 2007.
  • 2007 - The impact of the LCBO deposit return can be seen on blue box program tonnage.
  • July 2008 - All multi-residential buildings collected by the City moved to a volume-based rate levy for waste.
  • November 2008 - All single family households moved to a volume-based rate levy for waste.
  • 2009 - Recycling and SSO tonnage was down due to six weeks of labour disruption which impacted in-house collection.
    The six weeks of labour disruption represents 11.5% of the year.
  • Blue Bin recyclables and Green Bin organics were down approximately 11%
  • Blue Bin residue also increased from 17% in 2008 to 20% in 2009.
  • Fall 2009 – Polystyrene and plastic film added
  • Fall 2012 – Mixed rigid plastics added
  • June 2015 - More types of soft plastic film added

Tipface

Green Lane Landfill

Toronto's modern, environmentally sound, state-of-the-art solid waste disposal facility with landfill gas management and leachate management systems.

Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) depot worker

Working Groups

Multi-Family Waste Diversion, Residual Waste and 3Rs Working Groups

News Releases

reuse.jpg

News archive

Solid Waste Management Services news release archives by year and month.