Beaconsfield tries out metered garbage

By Robert Frank

Citizens could be taxed by the amount of garbage that they generate, rather than pay a flat rate per household for waste collection, if a twelve-month Beaconsfield pilot project proves successful.
The city received a $113,850 grant from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to try measuring how much waste each residence sets out at the curb, using bins that are marked like measuring cups to show how much volume they contain. They will also be given a choice of what size bin best suits their needs.
“We believe that this is the first project like this in Quebec,” city manager Patrice Boileau said in an interview.
Three hundred residents in selected neighbourhoods will participate in the project.
“Beaconsfield is fortunate to have an environmental advisory committee and a waste management sub-committee,” he acknowledged. “We have a group of dedicated volunteers led by councilor Wade Staddon working on this.”
The city also plans to help citizens reduce the volume of waste by providing a free composter, and by training people how to compost.
“In a year or two, we ought to have a good idea of what the potential for the whole city of Beaconsfield to participate is,” Boileau explained. “For now, we need to collect data and see results before we reach any conclusions.”
Mayor David Pollock said in a statement that “the project is one of many steps that the city is taking to become more sustainable by encouraging less waste, greater participation in composting and reducing our environmental impact by transporting less waste to dump sites.”

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