Organic waste accounts for 45% of garbage for average Londoner: Urban League of London

Landfill diversion is an important element in reducing food waste.
Landfill diversion is an important element in reducing food waste. Thanatham Piriyakarnjanakul / EyeEm / Getty

London may not have a green bin or composting program yet, but the Urban League of London wants to talk about going waste-free by 2050.

During their regular monthly meeting Thursday night, the league is hosting a panel discussion to talk about the Waste-Free Ontario Act that was passed last year.

The goal of the act is to remove organic waste like food leftovers from landfills.

READ MORE: Ontario looking at banning food waste in garbage

Currently, the City of London is working on two main projects related to becoming waste-free.

“One, they’re doing an environmental assessment of the landfill because within six to seven years our current landfill, the W12A, will be full, and so they needed to either find a new landfill or extend this one. The second strategy they’re doing is resource recovery which is somewhat of a fancy way of saying organic diversion,” said Skylar Franke of the Urban League’s board of directors.

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Asked what London’s problem with waste is, Franke said compost.

“Our biggest issue is that we don’t have an organics diversion strategy. Right now, 45 per cent of what’s at the curbside in the average Londoners garbage bag is organic,” she said.

READ MORE: London Food Coalition tackles food insecurity and waste

Rather than looking at the cost, Franke hops the public will be excited about positive environmental changes.

“Sometimes I worry that people always put a price tag to progress. I think if it’s provincially mandated that all large municipalities across Ontario divert organics from their landfill, they have to do it no matter what, but also, I just think people should be really excited that they can have a really good impact on the environment by diverting organics out of their waste.”

Speakers from the City of London and the Middlesex London Health Unit will be on hand to talk about how the municipality and the province are working to comply with the act.

Londoners are invited to attend the meeting at Goodwill Industries on Horton Street from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday to share their opinions about a waste-free city.