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Municipalities struggling to get residents to compost

WATCH: Municipalities across Montreal are struggling to encourage residents to compost. Global’s Sarah Volstad finds out what measures are being put in place to force residents to produce less garbage.

BEACONSFIELD – Starting next year, Beaconsfield households will have to pay for garbage pick-up.

Residents currently pay $176 per year on waste collection but starting in the new year, there will be a fixed cost of $150 per year.

That will include 12 pick-ups, plus a supplementary charge based on the size of the bin and the frequency at which it’s put to the curb.

It’s all part of an effort to reduce the amount of waste going to landfills.

“There are all kinds of environmental issues with landfills so we have to be responsible,” said Georges Bourelle, Beaconsfield Mayor.

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But not all residents are sold on the idea.

Waseem Ramli, a father of two children, told Global News he’s worried the municipality’s new waste collection system will place larger families like his at an economic disadvantage.

“If somebody is living by himself with his wife, for example, he won’t produce as much waste as people with kids,” said Ramli.

“We can’t really tell the kids ‘we can’t change your diaper twice a day or three times a day’ or something like that. We worry about the earth, we worry about the future of our kids, but do we have to start paying for it?”

Bourelle said it shouldn’t cost much more than what residents are already paying if they take advantage of alternative methods of waste disposal already available to them.

“If you compost all your organic material, that’s again a lot less matter going to landfills,” said Bourelle.

Compost Montreal couldn’t agree more.

The organization is working with municipalities and the City of Montreal to help with their strategic planning for waste reduction.

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“We’re starting to see real concrete actions that boroughs and municipalities are taking that are really starting to show some results,” said Stephen McLeod of Compost Montreal.

Last month, Pointe-Claire reduced the frequency of its garbage pick-ups from once a week to every two weeks.

Montreal West has had a full organic waste pick-up system since 2013, and the borough of Rosemont now has organic waste collection on most of its territory.

“The Sud-Ouest has the only compost site on the island of Montreal that accepts food waste right now,” said McLeod.

Ideally, Compost Montreal would like to see a universal system of organic waste collection and management on the entire island.

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