Toronto Expands Successful Dog Trash Can Program

The pilot project is an attempt to keep organic waste out of landfills and recycling, where it contaminates everything in the bin.

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The third phase of the elimination of dog excrement in Toronto begins.

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A pilot project that placed special compartments for “dog poop” in litter bins was so successful that the city expanded again with 62 more containers in new locations.

That’s a total of 100 dog bins since the project started a year ago.

A special section of the city’s dumpsters has a green sticker that says “dog poop” and has a picture of a pet owner throwing dog waste in the bin.

Two years ago, an increase in the amount of organic material in street trash cans was duly noted – near parks and anywhere dogs hang out.

The pilot project is an attempt to keep organic waste out of the landfill by simply dumping it in a trash can. (And to keep that waste from being recycled. When pet owners put dog litter in that trash can, everything else gets dirty.)

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In the first two phases of the pilot project, about 60% of the organic waste normally placed in the garbage or recycling bins in street bins was placed in the dog waste bin.

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The city says more than 500 tons of organic material has been redirected since the parks began placing green containers four years ago. This organic material can be recycled to create solids that turn into soil enriching compost.

Recycling organics also produces biogas, which can be converted into renewable natural gas, which the city uses to power its vehicles and facilities, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“I’m happy to see the results demonstrate why this program is needed and important,” Mayor John Tory said in a video posted to Twitter on Tuesday. “Further expansion will allow us to see better results and understand the feasibility of the pilot program.”

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Thanking the residents who used the trash cans, Tori added: “You are helping to keep our streets clean and reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill. I encourage residents to keep an eye on these trash cans and use them when they walk their dogs.”

If you don’t have a dedicated dog poop bin where you walk your dog, throw the poop bag in the bin, or better yet, take it home and put it in your green trash can. Never recycle Fido’s waste!

The third phase of the pilot project will last six months.

The location of all garbage cans – where are the dogs, people – you can find out on the city website.

lbrown@postmedia.com

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