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Organics diversion strategy symposium

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Event details

We invite you to attend the City of Winnipeg’s Organics Diversion Strategy Symposium!

This is your opportunity to learn more about the City’s efforts to manage organic waste and tell us what you want in an organics program.

City Council approved a comprehensive waste management plan in October 2011, designed to keep more than half of our garbage out of the landfill by giving Winnipeg residents more ways to reduce, reuse and recycle.

Organics diversion programs will be necessary to reach this goal as organics make up approximately 40% of Winnipeg’s residential waste stream.

At the symposium, you will:

  • learn various perspectives on managing organic waste from an expert speaker panel
  • interact with local citizen, business and community stakeholders
  • take part in breakout sessions where you can share your thoughts

Together we can create a comprehensive organic waste management strategy!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Registration at 5:00pm,
Event 5:30 – 7:30 pm

West End Cultural Centre
586 Ellice Avenue


September 9, 2015

What are the most important things for the City to consider as it creates a plan to manage and divert more organic waste?

  • What should the economic, environmental and social outcomes for the plan be?
  • What should organics waste diversion do for Winnipeg?

This is what we heard at the Symposium. Please feel free to add your comments below.

  • Proper education (multi-language)
  • Convenient
  • Focus on largest generators-producers.
  • Focused on residential because those are our citizens
  • Ease of use (not a lot of sorting). Use incentives and disincentives (bans) charges
  • Expect high use (we could exceed 50%)
  • Refuse to pick up garbage if no organic bin is out.
  • Check in with other cities about multi families.
  • Polluter pays – those that waste more, pay more.
  • Who will pay for Organics?
  • We are already paying for it- either now or later.
  • Don’t want the cost borne by taxpayer.
  • Equity
  • Love to put organics in green bin.
  • I will pay for the cost as a taxpayer, but I want it to be convenient.
  • Are we learning from Europe, Brandon, etc.?
  • What potential exist to recover biogas, especially if we look at province-wide.
  • City should sell compost back to citizens.
  • How does Winnipeg want to be seen?
  • Create jobs.
  • Sense of pride to live here
  • 100 years landfill is not a long time.
  • Extend life of landfill.
  • Reduce odor from landfill gas.
  • People spend $ on compost.
  • Buy it back?
  • Reverse back to Public/ Schools.
  • Transparency –Where glass go?
  • All population considered (Glass) not communicated back. Least complicated, long barriers
  • Use of end product
  • Periodicity of pick-up (freezing in winter)
  • Decentralization (transportation is resource intensive) – Consider energy footprint and space footprint- look at e.g. Vermicomposting.
  • Find community niches.
  • Community vs. municipal programs (e.g. in an apartment building) Need vision + perspective that composting is a public service.
  • Public education critical (look at recycling learning curve)
  • Safe (e.g. diseased firewood) –think Waste vs. Resource.
  • Get started… with some part of system /grow.
  • Consider ‘discomfort ‘of changing personal habits.
  • Make citizen aware.  Except city to teach citizens
  • Education- cost related to transporting, separating reduce environmental impact.
  • Big scale; restaurants, apartment, office buildings
  • How you get people to change behavior –changing the norm.
  • City doesn’t seem committed
  • Selling composting
  • Education –easy
  • Financially –do cost benefit analysis. Find a system that works for Winnipeg.
  • Find end-use/ market for compost.
  • Transparent with taxes –where is $ going?
  • Value of “Waste” –neighbor patrol.  Use carrots + sticks.
  • Educating people-motivation & high participation
  • Just do it!!
  • Start small-get feedback.
  • Bring revenue.
  • Long-term –sustainability
  • Buy on?? Reason to participate
  • Tax Credit; back yard composters. Other incentives??
  • Cost – Bad habits of spending before funds are available.
  • Must have effective plan, improve diversion.
  • Have a well communicated goal explained to public strong education throughout.
  • Make program easy to use. Current carts are hard to use.
  • Try and introduce user pay system.
  • Recognition for back yard composting e.g. rebate, credit, putting cart out 1/month vs. every week.
  • Source identification, i.e. multifamily vs. single family
  • Create zero waste programs to equalize.
  • Target ICI just as strong as residential
  • Community participation
  • Frequency of pick-up
  • Community composting (apartments)
  • Buy-in from public
  • Education
  • Future thinking (vision)
  • Business community
  • Climate change
  • Outcomes: Set targets (achievable) should make us a more sustainable city.

September 9, 2015

What stood out to you from the Panel presentation and discussion?

This is what we heard at the Symposium. Please feel free to add your comments below.

  • How to make it convenient for folks (recycling bin issue)
  • Training a generation
  • 1/3 of households have curbside (expected lower)
  • Economics and end use are important-should talk about business case more.
  • Why are we still talking about this? Let’s just do it.
  • Surprised we’re still talking about burning it.
  • Residential (house) focus– consider for Condo/Apts.
  • We are behind other cities/provinces in organics strategy.
  • Brady is a mess.
  • Everything is good idea-but who will pay? How will we recuperate the costs?
  • Got to be easy + convenient, simple + cost effective
  • Landfill is not without cost- today & future LFG (GHGs)
  • Need extensive cost benefit analysis.
  • No longer waste; valuable resource + economic opp.
  • Support farmers, presenter to do organics.
  • Manage organics within current economic model-cost neutral with life cycle.
  • Cultural aspect of composts –being together/ life style
  • 40 % divers or potential
  • Where does it go?
  • Odor / site of bin
  • Apartments/ lack of backyard (2) Community garden
  • “Flavors” of composting- lots of surprises (e.g. pet waste)
  • End use-what happens? Sold? Donated? How accessed?
  • Concern: 30 % of participants didn’t know why to compost. Some ignorance of WHY in panelists’ presentation – consider science of where planet is at. (e.g. climate change)- Kyoto protocol.
  • So… communicate numbers + support overcome barriers to participation.
  • Not much discussion of multifamily homes.
  • Landfill space is abundant; little economic imperative.
  • Amount that can diverted
  • Benefit and challenge of diversion
  • Financial plan-Who is going to pay for it. Need for participation.
  • Low % of group not composting – on site composting is cheapest.
  • Need all government –composting is a life style.
  • How to reduce Organic Waste at the source and the environmental impact
  • How to manage G.H.G.
  • Other communities have double diversion of Winnipeg.
  • Competing priorities – how did other communities make it NB.
  • Why do we keep talking with no action?
  • At some point you have to start. The ease of pick-up will make it effective.
  • Less garbage pick-up = cost savings.
  • Competing for resources
  • Compile resources.
  • End product (value/profit)
  • Pro: keen/participation
  • Con: need more involvement from City residence (how fast can you make your city compost pile?)
  • Huge potential; commitment; keep going
  • Contribution from communities
  • Big effort= min. standards for schools.
  • City will introduce an Organics Program whether people like it or not.
  • Significant residents already composting
  • Hauling schools will be/is important in overall participation.
  • Not a strong business case.
  • How does this fit into being a great city.
  • Garbage into resources is important. Continue changing perspective on those programs.
  • Strong piece on financial/Cost impact
  • Why is this important?
  • Create more organics pick up/ less garbage.
  • The 3 pillars approach (Balance)
  • Comprehensive
  • Wanting to engage with community
  • Funding balance with cost + needs of people /family
  • Make the business case
  • How do we live good lives?

September 9, 2015

What would a compelling and convenient Organics program look like for you?

The success of an organics program depends on how well it is used.  How could we get good participation in a new program?

This is what we heard at the Symposium. Please feel free to add your comments below.

  • Back yard composting still encouraged.
  • Residential, commercial and institutional at the same time
  • Keep yard/leaf waste pick up the same and add weekly kitchen pick up.
  • Free bins with mandatory education; otherwise pay for bin.
  • More frequent pick up for compost and less frequent for garbage.
  • Organic waste reduction program
  • Kitchen catcher & bag to move to a bigger pick up cart
  • Convenient
  • Easy to use (where will I put my cart? How will I use it?)
  • Education –School level – Public/Adult population (TV, Billboards)
  • Answers what goes in the bin.
  • Create a brand.
  • Accessible
  • Cost affective
  • Has to work in the winter months
  • Simple program
  • HDR’s best practices (Good start)
  • Apartment – outside storage, frequent p/u.
  • Easy to use containers/ compact
  • Victoria BC – people could choose container size.
  • 0 cost to Winnipeg.
  • Organic Waste Methane Gas
  • Cost/ Timeline/ Schedule
  • Create jobs?
  • Organic disposal ban (By-law)
  • Can use liner bags-make them available at libraries (consider cost/economic disadvantage)
  • Easy to use in home- e.g. kitchen counter container provided.
  • Communicates;  Why this is important.
  • Tied into a community garden program-return resources  to generators.
  • Collected
  • Compostable bag availability
  • Accessible everywhere – office, apt, schools.
  • Education; from schools
  • City has a plan for growth and commit.
  • Peer-peer pressure
  • Competition
  • Report on amounts + compare to other communities/ neighborhoods.
  • Need to use bags-freezing.
  • Bi-weekly grey bin. Weekly blue/green bin
  • 60% reduction
  • Using various composting tech to capture more stuff.
  • Address the “yuck” factors –school participation.
  • Reverse “yuck” factor –easy/convenient.
  • Good Marketing of end product/promotion of how to compost.
  • Like Brandon: sign up system to show all others and then adopt for everybody.
  • No reason organics should go into garbage.
  • Strong education on how to deal with all organics
  • Strong school participation/ how people learn/participate early and often.
  • Convert the non-believers.
  • Show cost benefit to everybody.
  • Maximize knowledge through media options.
  • Make participation a habit, not a chore.
  • Mandatory
  • Regulated
  • Socially acceptable (Clears plastic bags for trash)
  • Easy, convenient
  • All inclusive (pet waste, etc.) everything in
  • Consistency (symbols, etc.)
  • Education
  • Keep backyard composting etc.

September 9, 2015

As planning continues what information might be important for public and stakeholders to know or hear about?

This is what we heard at the Symposium. Please feel free to add your comments below.

  • That it’s happening.
  • Timelines
  • Cost + what kind of enforcement there will be.
  • What is the driver? Why would we do it given Brady will be good for 100 yrs.
  • Where will it be processed + how
  • End product? What is happening?
  • Clear decision we’re doing it.
  • Show successes.
  • Get a director / staff the office.
  • Explain cycle of food +nutrients + soil health.
  • Give citizens information.
  • Stimulate responsibility
  • What other cities are doing –Social shame / “We compost too”.
  • Can’t please all the people all the time
  • Timelines-how long will it take?
  • Goals
  • Who are the partners?
  • Cost to taxpayer
  • What will the system look like? –User pay?
  • Education
  • Repeat the issues, facts, and why it’s important to do –critical to changing public values.
  • Reduce food waste at its source (how do we do this?)
  • Transparency –cost
  • Capturing gas- What to do with it?
  • Ease of use
  • Apartment
  • Big picture numbers-including energy/emission footprint of system.
  • Consider emotional needs of users.
  • Collection vs. participation in a system
  • Feedback- regular/monthly, regular environmental impacts
  • Understanding what other cities are doing.
  • Integrated waste management plan for a better understanding.
  • Regular public reports on progress – cost, transport costs vs. value of compost. What is the cost of not doing it?
  • Education (tours of landfills to public groups) to public how and future systems
  • Cost of organic collection.
  • City commitment to program
  • Integrated waste system as a whole and organics for all citizens
  • What happened to 2011 plan? Is this stalling?
  • Couldn’t we be starting already at existing facility? –We are frustrated!
  • Report back, show timeline.
  • Better promotion –Social Media
  • Better /dedicated website- app/twitter/etc… (Don’t model the snow zones!!)
  • Education
  • Good leadership-down stream
  • Environ benefits- GHGs, climate change (overall benefits), connection of global issues.
  • Continuous improvement
  • Cost of options, what work forces
  • What strong business plan is?
  • Who, What, Where, When, Why, How.
  • Compare to other municipalities to show possible reasonable cost.
  • Define problems this a priority?
  • Look at disposal fees to encourage these programs i.e. raise fees.
  • Need more convenient information availability of programs
  • Keep momentum of diversion.
  • Cost. What is it, why?
  • Convenience, simple/ easy to use
  • Education /outreach convert the non-participants
  • Make sure all sources are represented. I.e. SF, MF, ICI.
  • Incentive
  • Knowing what the “punishment” will be. Consequences of not following the program
  • Rewards! (Lowered taxes, recognition)
  • Education



Last updated: April 15, 2024

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