Garbage & Recycling

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Donate, borrow, repair.

Reducing the amount of waste you produce does not mean having to live with less. It just takes some planning.

Not-for-profit agencies

Not-for-profit groups use donations in various ways. Some re-sell the clothing and household items to provide support and/or employment for those in need and to fund their activities and research. Other charitable groups distribute your donations directly to their clients.

You can support these organizations in two ways: donate reusable items and shop at their retail operations.

Agencies want dry, clean and odourless household goods. Before you make a donation, please contact the organization to confirm their location and exactly what items they accept and any other details.

Please note the following:
All organizations want working items (unless otherwise specified). Do not donate an item that is not reusable. Keep in mind that most organizations have limited storage space. The listing of these organizations is not a City endorsement.

Donation Locations

Frequently Asked Questions

ExpandHow can I reduce my waste?

Purchase quality durable goods rather than disposable items. The cost may be higher initially, but in the long run you can save money. Don't throw anything away that can be reused or repaired. Fabric scraps, books, sporting goods, toys and clothing are always needed by non-profit groups.

Take all of your Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) to a Drop-off Depot. Try to compost your food and yard waste. Up to half of your household waste is compostable. It's a simple way to reduce waste and produce a nutrient-rich conditioner for your lawn, garden and houseplants.

Participate fully in the City's waste diversion programs: Green Bin organics, Blue Bin recycling, Yard Waste.

ExpandWhat can I do to reduce packaging?

Often opportunities to reduce waste are greatest at the point-of-purchase. Packaging makes up about half of our garbage by volume and one third by weight.

Considering buying items with less excess packaging.

Whenever possible, buy refillable or reusable containers. If you are unable to avoid it entirely, choose products with packaging that is accepted into the City's Blue Bin recycling program.

Bring your own bags when you shop and try to buy in bulk as often as possible. Use a travel mug for your tea and coffee when you are on the go.

ExpandWhat is the City doing to help reduce unnecessary packaging?

The City is an active member of PACnext. This working group includes brand owners, government representatives and packaging design representatives. The vision of this working group is to create a world without packaging waste. Its mission is to unite leading organizations across the packaging value chain to collaboratively explore, evaluate and mobilize innovative packaging end-of-life solutions.

ExpandWhat if my item is not accepted for reuse?

If furniture or appliances are not acceptable for reuse they can be set out for collection on garbage day, without requiring City-authorized Garbage Tags or an appointment. These items are picked up by a different truck on the same day.  If you live in an apartment or condo, speak with your building manager.

If your unwanted electronics cannot be reused or donated, they can be can be set out for collection on garbage day. Set items directly on the ground or in a cardboard box beside your Garbage bin. If you live in an apartment or condo, speak with your building manager. Drop-off Depots and Community Environment Days also accept these items.

ExpandWhy should I reuse?

Reuse is a great way to both save money and help the environment. Used items can often be purchased at a lower price and by doing so both energy and raw materials are saved. You can extend the useful life of a product by donating it to someone else for reuse.

ExpandWhy should I try to reduce my waste?

Reducing waste is the best way to deal with garbage - it's the most effective of the 3Rs. By eliminating waste at its source - by bringing your own bag to the grocery store, purchasing products with minimal packaging, or buying quality durable goods - that waste does not end up in landfill and no extra energy is required to reuse or recycle it.