Recycling – FAQ

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Do I have to sort our recyclables?

      • You are not required to sort your recyclables.

How should I put out my shredded or loose paper for recycling?

To help reduce litter, you can:

    • Pack the paper tightly in your blue box (or other container no larger than a blue box, such as a cardboard box, large plastic container or tote) to prevent it from blowing away
    • Put lighter paper between heavier items, newspapers or cardboard
    • Put heavier items or another box on top
    • Put your shredded paper in a full size see-through, tied, plastic garbage bag. This is the only exception to the “no bags” policy. Please do not put items into grocery bags.

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Can I recycle books?

    • Yes, you can recycle books – both soft cover and hard cover books.  You are asked to remove the hard covers before placing the books in your recycle bin.

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Can I recycle wrapping paper and tissue paper?

It depends:

      • Un-coated paper and tissue paper are recyclable.
      • Coated papers (such as ‘Christmas’ gift wrapping papers) are not recyclable.

Can I recycle frozen juice containers?

      • No. These containers are often made of blended materials such as wax and metal that can’t be recycled.

Can I recycle construction or art paper?

      • Yes, as long as it is not a coated paper and it does not have crayon wax or glue on it.

Can I recycle phone books?

      • You can recycle your old phone books by placing them in your blue box. Apartment residents should put their phone books in their recycling bins. Residents can also put their phone books in the “paper” bin at our local recycling depot.

How should I put my cardboard out for collection?

    • Cardboard should be crushed flat and should measure no more than 1 metre in any direction. It should not be tied.
    • It is best if you put your cardboard inside your blue box but we will also collect cardboard that is stacked under your blue box. If you decide to place your cardboard beside your blue box, please secure it from blowing away in the wind and make sure it is easily identified as being for recycling collection instead of garbage collection.

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Will my collection day change?

I just moved into my newly constructed home. Am I eligible for a free blue cart?

      • Yes

How do I use the recycling depot?

    • Please place items in the appropriate marked bins. Some fees do apply for drop-offs.
    • Place these fees in the collection box. PVC recycling depot is located at 160 Grant Street.

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Can I recycle the plastic packaging around a 6-pack of drinking boxes and other similar plastic packaging that does not have a recycling symbol on it?

      • Yes

Can I recycle Styrofoam?

    • No – but first check that it is not actually polystyrene (a recyclable plastic that looks like Styrofoam), it will have a recycling icon.

Here are a few suggestions of what to do with Styrofoam.

    • Keep it as packing – how many times have you needed to pack something for shipping and found you had nothing on hand? Break down large lumps of styrofoam into smaller chunks and keep a bag of it handy
    • Craft projects – crafters use styrofoam in their craft projects so you might want to check with the local Arts Council or schools to see if they need some.
    • Planters – I’ve seen it used in pot plants to assist with drainage and as a filler.

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Can I recycle Tim Horton’s coffee cups?

      • No.
      • These wax-coated paper cups can go into your green compost cart (first, remove the plastic lid).

Recycling Plastics – What do the numbers mean?

      • On most plastic jars, containers and other packaging of products you buy, you’ll find what’s generally accepted as the recycling logo with a number in the middle and letters underneath stamped into the plastic.
      • With plastics: The recycling logo when stamped into plastic isn’t a guarantee that what it’s stamped into is easily recyclable and in some cases it’s not at all. Look for products where the packaging is stamped 1 or 2.
      • The Society of the Plastics Industry (SPI) implemented the system in 1988 to allow recyclers to be able to tell the different types of plastics when sorting. Basically, the numbers in the triangle indicate the grade of plastic – the resin ID code. It’s now a system that’s used in many different countries. Here’s what to look for and what it all means:
        1. PETE

          – Polyethylene Terephthalate – The easiest of plastics to recycle. Often used for soda bottles, water bottles and many common food packages. Is recycled into bottles and polyester fibers

        2. HDPE

          – High density Polyethylene – Also readily recyclable – Mostly used for packaging detergents, bleach, milk containers, hair care products and motor oil. Is recycled into more bottles or bags.

        3. PVC

          – Polyvinyl Chloride -This stuff is everywhere – pipes, toys, furniture, packaging – you name it. Difficult to recycle and PVC is a major environmental and health threat.

        4. LDPE

          – Low-density Polyethylene -Used for many different kinds of wrapping, grocery bags and sandwich bags and can be recycled into more of the same.

        5. PP

          – Polypropylene – Clothing, bottles, tubs. Can be recycled into fibers.

        6. PS

          – Polystyrene – Cups, foam food trays, packing peanuts. Polysterene is a real problem as it’s bulky yet very lightweight and that makes it difficult to recycle. For example, a carload of expanded polystyrene would weigh next to nothing so there’s not a lot of materials to reclaim, particularly when you take into account the transport getting it to the point of recycling. It can however be reused.

        7. Other

          -Could be a mixture of any and all of the above. Or plastics not readily recyclable such as polyurethane. Avoid it if you can – recyclers generally speaking don’t want it.

The recycling logo when stamped into plastic isn’t a guarantee that what it’s stamped into is easily recyclable. Look for the number stamped in the symbol.

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