CFN – A recent visit with a friend in Hamilton, Ontario opened my eyes to “POSSIBILITY”. The possibility of growing flowers and food on my own front yard. Many front yard vegetable gardens were sighted on my stroll through an older neighborhood. Think of the possibilities this offers. The possibility of nutritious low cost food, sharing, community, not to mention the bio diverse environment this offers to our precious bees and butterflies. Additionally the amazing possibility a comprehensive recycling program has of reducing one’s contribution to the local landfill site to a small bag of garbage every one or two weeks. Think about it….how much garbage do you put to the curb each week?
Hamilton, a city of over 500,000 people has recycling and waste pickup services in place which make it very possible to reduce a family of four garbage production to a small bag per week. With some forethought and careful buying habits I would guess eliminating one’s garbage destined to the local landfill site is POSSIBLE. How incredible is that? This is achievable because of the other recycling services they have in place to accommodate the many other materials which we accumulate with our day to day purchases and property choices.
I’m happy to use our recycling services in my community however there is refuse that we are left with on occasion which are deposited in the garbage because our municipality does not recycle them. It is understandable that the small volume of certain materials accumulated or collected in a smaller community can make the cost of recycling that material prohibitive.
During my short visit I was excited to learn about offerings which I would love to see within my community. Firstly the city issues a number of trash tags per year for each household. This means that each household is entitled to put out a certain quantity of trash destined for the landfill site each year. These tags are good only for the year in which they are issued. Each household is allowed one trash can of garbage bag per week, without a tag. Any additional garbage will require a tag. This certainly encourages one to consider the benefits of recycling. One can put out any item that is on the list for recycling in the appropriate container or packaging/bundling requested. In addition to the usual suspects you would expect to find in a recycling bin, Hamilton also recycles Styrofoam. I was absolutely ecstatic to discover this. Seems like every time some new appliance is purchased one can expect the same volume of such packing material.
The City also has a green box program for food scraps and paper food items which are composted for reuse. The City will also pick up any/all of your yard when it is produced, any time of the year, and offers large appliance pickup all year round by appointment. Community recycling centers are also open each week day so that people can drop off items that are not collected during their normal garbage pick-up day. Items considered hazardous waste such as compact fluorescent bulbs, paint, batteries, needles etc. This service is for waste produced at one’s home. Businesses must use a contracted waste disposal company.
Hamilton also has Master Recyclers and community partners who will visit your school or event and are available to discuss how you can make your home, organization or business lives earth friendly and sustainable. The City also has a gold box program. Gold recycle boxes are awarded to households that embrace the recycling initiatives that the city as put forward for the benefit of the community. You can find out more about the City’s recycling programs here. http://www.hamilton.ca/CityServices/Garbage-and-Recycling/
This writer is sending out Love & Appreciation to Hamilton for supporting these wonderful earth friendly initiatives. Thank you!
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