15. Pay-as-you-throw

Toronto is going to start charging for garbage pickup in 2008, depending on how much you toss. Our garbage only gets picked up once every two weeks (green bin, which is all of the stinky stuff like all food waste, used tissues, paper towels, paper food packaging, diapers, sanitary products, and animal waste, gets picked up every week) and if you only fill one garbage bag, then you won’t have to pay. We do that now, so we’ll just go with the smallest container.

But my pilates & yoga instructor/neighbour works in waste management, so I asked her if this meant that we would be adding other things to the list of recyclables and she said milk and bread bags (I’m not sure if it’s all plastic bags or just those – I’ll have to clarify) will be recycled. We use a lot of milk every week, and my local grocery stores don’t sell the 4L plastic jugs that you can take back for a deposit, so I’m stuck with bags. I’ve looked into getting glass, but all I could find is Harmony Organic which sells 1L glass bottles for almost $4 a pop. That’s fine if you don’t go through 4-6 litres per week, but… no thanks. (By the way, I don’t know how we go through so much milk… I guess when you cook and bake and my toddler drinks about 300mL/day it all adds up.) Anyway, I’ve decided that I’m going to clean and dry and hang onto all of those plastic bags until the time comes that they can be recycled.

It’s a lot of bags to store, but that just means it’s a lot of bags diverted from the landfill.


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