Colchester County’s garbage separation program showing clear signs of progress

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Verna Cain, a food court attendant at the Truro Mall, removes a clear bag from a garbage dumpster, which is also equipped to accept compostables and recyclables in separate containers. An increasing number of businesses are providing similar bins. 

KEMPTOWN - Better garbage separation practices within Colchester County over the past year has resulted in nearly 3,000 tonnes less material at the municipal balefill facilty.

“I’m very happy,” said Darlyne Proctor, the municipality’s waste reduction manager. “It’s moving forward and we’re gaining strides in our diversion and we’re looking forward to even doing better for next year.”

Colchester County officially enacted a clear bag policy for garbage collection at the beginning of last January. During the first 12 months of operation, the move resulted in a reduction of household and commercial garbage by 2,674 tonnes.

Recyclables, meanwhile, have increased by 563 tonnes and organics (compost) have been increased by 1,007 tonnes.

“The clear bag has brought greater awareness of proper waste separation,” Proctor said. “There has been very good participation from both the residential and commercial sectors.”

Some businesses have even recognized cost savings by properly separating their waste, she said, and a number of businesses are looking at improving their signage to better promote proper garbage disposal at their sites.

But overall, one year after implementation of the program, officials are pleased with the direction things are going.

“I think all roads are moving towards success,” Proctor said. “There’s always room for improvement, for some fine tuning, but I think that was a pretty good jump,” she said, of the first year’s results.


By the numbers

Colchester County, Truro and Stewiacke garbage disposal from  Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2011 (in metric tonnes)

Household garbage – 6,367.31

Commercial garbage – 14,290.50

Total garbage 20,658 tonnes

Organics – 6,370.14

Recyclables – 2,544.74

Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2012

Household garbage – 4,885.72

Commercial garbage – 13,098.33

Total garbage – 17,984 tonnes

Organics – 7377.53

Recyclables – 3,107.55



Geographic location: Colchester County, Stewiacke

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Recent comments

  • Joanna
    January 13, 2013 - 21:58

    I've said it before & I'll say it again: The rules are out there & they're NOT that hard to follow. Unless you're lazy, that is.

  • Concerned
    January 13, 2013 - 12:11

    I am positive the numbers are down. Just take a drive through Union Rd, Blackrock, Greenfield, Camden, Upper Brookfield, and on and on. Proof positive the system is going backwards. Maybe the County should concentrate on picking up the trash instead of leaving it behind. The back roads are a mess, and you guessed it, it's no one's problem. Your tax dollars hard at work ladies and gentleman........

  • Mr. Slappy
    January 12, 2013 - 20:10

    Actually...these numbers are proof positive that the clear bag program is horribly broken. Total tonnes of waste always increase year over year. There was a 1500 tonne increase in the amount of compost and recyclables....however where did the 1100 tonnes go that went missing altogether from last year.....which should actually be 1500 plus tonnes with year over year total waste increases?? Wait...don't answer...I'll tell you where.....into illegal dumps all over the county. So for every tonne they've diverted....they've sent another tonne into the woods, rivers and lakes dumped by people frustrated by the garbage nazis!

  • misty
    January 12, 2013 - 09:58

    lot of the household garbage can be found out on our woodland roads,,,drive thro the CAMDEN ROAD to MIDDLE STEWIACKE..or the woods roads anywhere in the,clothing,,cans ,paper ,bottles,,,JUST PLAIN OLD TRASH,,,dumped don't pat yourself to hard on the back or you might break it..