Organics Collection Starts Next Week in Airdrie

This week, Airdrie is starting their organics collection program throughout the city. All you need to do is put your organic bin alongside your garbage and recycling bins by 7:00 am on your collection day. Keep in mind garbage and organics are usually picked up on the same day while recycling will be picked up the next. The city has put out a pick-up calendar for each community so you can double check your dates. Still can’t seem to remember your pick up day? No worries! Sign up on myairdrie.cato get text or email reminders before your pickup day so you don’t miss out.

Now, this sounds like it’s going to be extra work, right? Well, it really isn’t, and it can make a huge difference! Instead of throwing these items in the garbage, simply put them into a separate organics container:

  • Plate scraps.
  • Fruits and vegetables, including the pits.
  • Meat and bones.
  • Bread, grains and cereal.
  • Eggs and eggshells.
  • Cooking oils, fats and greases. Soak them up with a paper towel and then throw this in the bin.
  • Nuts, seeds, popcorn and candy.

Essentially, any food scraps you have can be thrown into the organics bin instead of the garbage.

Now you’re probably asking, “what are the benefits of composting?” Well, listen up! We’ll use Milan, Italy as an example. They started their separate organics pickup in 2012 and saw a huge level of engagement over the first 18 months. By giving people a clean and easy way to dispose of their organics, they saw a decrease in contaminated organic recycling and an even bigger decrease in organic material going to landfills. By 2015, the city saw a 53.5 per cent separation rate, with the largest contribution being food waste.

That all sounds pretty good, right? I’m sure you’re wondering what happens to these organics once you put them out back. It’s typically a four-step process:

  1. First, they are collected in a container that is strictly for organics and sent to an organics processing facility.
  2. Once it arrives at the facility, it is unloaded onto a tipping floor where they remove all plastic bags. They are mixed with water to remove all inorganic materials.
  3. The material remaining is then put in anaerobic digesters where microorganisms break down the organics.
  4. It is then processed into high-quality compost to be used in parks and gardens. In some cities like Calgary and Toronto, they give out the compost for free so that the communities can use it to garden.

Composting is a great way to reduce waste going to landfills, lower Airdrie’s ecological-footprint while also making the city a nicer place to live. With just a slight tweak to your typical cooking and cleaning habits, you can make help Airdrie go green – while also having a less stinky garbage can!