City green bin program delayed in London, Ont.

Beginning in late 2023, green carts will roll out across Regina as the new Food and Yard Waste service becomes available city-wide. File / Global News

London’s highly-anticipated green bin garbage program has been delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Originally expected to start next fall, it will now be summer or fall of 2022 before Londoners will be able to dispose of their organic food waste in green bins.

The pandemic is taking the brunt of the blame, as city politicians had signed off on the 60 per cent Waste Diversion Action Plan in early March, just weeks before the COVID-19 emergency was declared.

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According to a report going to the civic works committee, most of the plan was put on hold to “ensure that essential services were operated in a safe manner following all rules from the provincial government and subsequent direction from public health officials.”

The report suggests the impacts from the pandemic have delayed projects and programs by at least six months, and in some cases up to 18 months.

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In the meantime, city staff are preparing to start a public feedback process to gather insights from Londoners on some of how the green bins should work.

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The bins will be used to collect organic food waste, but residents can provide input on whether things like diapers and dog waste would be allowed. Staff will be looking to discuss the design of indoor and outdoor containers, bi-weekly garbage collection and what liners should be used.

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Online consultation is expected to start later this month.

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