Solid Waste Master Plan

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

The City is developing a new Solid Waste Master Plan, to be completed in 2023. The plan will guide how we manage solid waste over the next 30 years. As Ottawa grows and changes, we want to ensure our waste services evolve to meet new needs and challenges. This page will be your hub for updates and opportunities to provide feedback.

Nothing has been decided yet – your input counts!

Managing solid waste is a shared responsibility, and every resident has a part to play. That’s why, over the next two years, we need meaningful conversations with you to help ensure the new Solid Waste Master Plan works for everyone.

The City is developing a new Solid Waste Master Plan, to be completed in 2023. The plan will guide how we manage solid waste over the next 30 years. As Ottawa grows and changes, we want to ensure our waste services evolve to meet new needs and challenges. This page will be your hub for updates and opportunities to provide feedback.

Nothing has been decided yet – your input counts!

Managing solid waste is a shared responsibility, and every resident has a part to play. That’s why, over the next two years, we need meaningful conversations with you to help ensure the new Solid Waste Master Plan works for everyone.

  • Thank for your feedback on Curbside Garbage Collection Options

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    We’re bringing you the rest of the Waste Plan options this Fall! We engaged on Curbside Garbage Collection first so that we could focus on these important potential changes that could affect the way your garbage is collected. We are analyzing all of the feedback received and will share a “What We Learned” report later this year.

    Waste Plan options being presented for engagement this Fall include more ideas to encourage diversion of waste from landfill, reduce and reuse waste, improve collection of waste in multi-residential buildings and parks, expand promotion and education ideas, improve the management of food and organics, and much, much more. Check back in October for an update!

  • Curbside Garbage Collection Options - Closed!

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    The survey is now closed, thank you for participating. A “What we Learned Report” will be released later this year, stay tuned! Please join us this Fall when we start engagement on the second phase of the Solid Waste Master Plan.

    Waste Plan options engagement has started and Curbside Garbage Collection Options are up first!

    Complete the survey and/or sign up for a workshop to have a say in how garbage gets collected from your home in the future.

    This survey focuses on just three Waste Plan options to help us increase waste diversion from the landfill. All other Waste Plan options will be presented for engagement in the Fall and will include ideas to reduce and reuse waste, improve collection of waste in multi-residential buildings and parks, improve the management of food and organics, and much, much more!!

    Reducing garbage at the curbside is crucial to help achieve our vision of a Zero Waste Ottawa.

    More than half of what people in Ottawa throw in the garbage could be recycled or composted.

    We know we can do better.

    If we rethink how we collect garbage at the curb, we can reduce emissions, extend the life of the landfill, and turn more waste into new products and resources.

    The options we’re exploring include partial pay-as-you-throw (PAYT), clear garbage bags with material bans and reduced firm item limits.

    You can also explore the purpose of this project, how options were developed and key considerations when it comes to education and enforcement approaches for these options.

    We're on it!

    Thanks to everyone for sending us your questions. We want to make sure we get you the best answer we can and due to the increase in volume, we'll need 5 business days to respond. We're loving these questions so keep them coming!

    Residents requiring accessibility accommodations or paper surveys can contact Elizabeth Cybulski at 613-580-2424 extension 23202.

  • Council approves Zero Waste vision for Solid Waste Master Plan

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    On July 7, 2021, City of Ottawa Council approved the Zero Waste vision presented by Public Works and Environmental Services as a part of the Solid Waste Master Plan Phase 2 Report.

    Opportunities to share your feedback on the Solid Waste Master Plan are coming soon. Sign up for the eNewsletter to stay in the loop on how to participate.

  • Phase 2 Report is Live!

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    The report will be presented to the Standing Committee on Environmental Protection, Water and Waste Management on June 29, 2021. On July 7, 2021 it will seek Council’s approval on the Waste Plan’s proposed vision, guiding principles and goals. The report will also provide Council members with key information about the City’s future waste management needs. This includes a long list of options to meet those needs, and a technical evaluation tool to assess the options. Wrapping up the report is an overview of what’s next for the SWMP – for example a new engagement series, coming to you this fall.

    If you participated in last year’s public engagement activities and shared your thoughts about the City’s waste management practices, you may be particularly interested in the appended 'As We Heard It' report. The report summarizes the feedback from residents and various stakeholder groups received through surveys and online dialogue sessions, and indicates how it was used to influence the development of the Plan to date.

    Technical documents are provided in the language of production and are translated upon request.

  • Hello!

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link
    supporting image

    My name is Annie and I am very excited to be the newest member of the Solid Waste Master Plan team. I will be the human behind the Engage Ottawa posts and updates you'll see this summer and fall. There's going to be a lot of new content coming to the platform and I hope that you'll enjoy engaging on these next stages of the master plan. You can still reach out to us via email at wasteplan@ottawa.ca or by using the "Question" feature on our page.

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link
    by Cathryne Lillian Milburn (City of Ottawa),
    supporting image

    Find the answers to some of your frequently asked questions here.

    What is a Solid Waste Master Plan?

    A City’s Solid Waste Master Plan helps us anticipate and respond to future waste-management needs. It ensures the City operates a fiscally responsible, socially accepted and environmentally conscious waste-management system.

    Why do we need a Solid Waste Master Plan in Ottawa?

    Over the next 30 years, Ottawa’s population will grow by almost 50 percent, an increase of an estimated 400,000. Ottawa’s plan will ensure that waste is managed in the most sustainable way possible. It will give our residents and businesses the options and alternatives they need to make better waste-management choices.

    What will be in the Solid Waste Master Plan?

    The plan will outline approaches to increase both curbside and multi-residential waste diversion. It will cover a variety of waste-management policies and include strategies for:

    • waste prevention and reuse
    • regulation of the waste industry
    • resource recovery
    • residual management

    The plan will also consider the City’s role within the wider context of what’s happening provincially, federally and globally on such issues as:

    • the shift to a circular economy
    • individual producer responsibility for products and packaging
    • reliance on single-use plastics

  • Questions about the Solid Waste Plan

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link
    by Cathryne Lillian Milburn (City of Ottawa),
    supporting image

    Do you have a question about the Solid Waste Plan? Ask them using our question and answer tool here.

  • Why is the Waste Plan needed and what are the key considerations?

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link
    by Cathryne Lillian Milburn (City of Ottawa),

    What is a Solid Waste Master Plan? Why is it needed in Ottawa? What are the key considerations for the Waste Plan? Read on to find out.

    Continue reading

  • What will be included and how will it be developed?

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link
    by Cathryne Lillian Milburn (City of Ottawa),

    The Solid Waste Master Plan (Waste Plan) will establish a planning framework and strategic direction for the management of waste from:


    • Curbside residential
    • Multi-residential
    • Parks and public spaces
    • City facilities
    • Partner programs and other non-City waste

    The Waste Plan will examine the limited life span of the Trail Waste Facility, how the City collects and processes waste and how it will continue to increase diversion rates. It will also look at broader policy issues like single-use plastics, alternative technologies, greenhouse gas emissions and circular economy programs like green procurement. Funding mechanisms and legislative tools and instruments will also be examined.

    Continue reading

  • New! How we have engaged so far

    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    Engagement Series 1

    From May to September 2020, staff, Councillors, residents and stakeholders were engaged to get input on how waste is currently managed in Ottawa and what they would like to see in the future. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, staff modified the Waste Plan’s engagement process so that all in-person engagement tactics were replaced with virtual methods. To ensure these activities connected with as many residents and stakeholders as possible, staff carried out a range of tactics, including:

    Virtual dialogue sessions with interested residents and stakeholders that included breakout sessions to allow small group discussions

    Virtual focus groups to connect with specific stakeholders, particularly those within the City’s equity and inclusion lens

    Virtual workshops with key stakeholders, such as the Stakeholder Sounding Board (more on this below)

    Online surveys with both the public and internal staff

    An Engage Ottawa platform that allowed for questions, ideas and participation in a forum

    One-on-one telephone interviews with representatives of equity-seeking groups

    A virtual dialogue session with residents and stakeholders with a focus on waste management at multi-residential properties

    What questions did we ask?

    Great discussions flowed from asking some high level, key questions, such as:

    1. What are the strengths of the current waste system in Ottawa and how can we improve?

    2. Imagine it’s 2052 and we’ve just completed our 30-year solid waste strategy. What does success look like to you?

    3. What are the key considerations for this success?

    What did we hear?

    A comprehensive As We Heard Report will be released in early 2021 that will provide an in-depth look at the feedback we gathered from all engagement activities. Top line comments included:

    1. Participants generally wanted the City to adopt very high waste diversion rates with many calling for a “zero waste” target.

    2. Many participants believed that behavioral change will be required to meet higher diversion rates, and that the City needed to focus on education to encourage people to ‘take responsibility for their waste’.

    3. Others called for more regulations and better enforcing of existing rules, such as issuing more fines, refusing to collect non-compliant waste, etc.

    4. Many comments related to the need to make it easier for people to divert their waste.

    5. Several participants believed that the City’s focus needed to be on waste reduction rather than diversion, and that the City should enact bans on single use plastics and encourage a circular economy and green procurement.

    6. With respect to multi-residential buildings, several participants noted that processes needed to be in place to make it easier for residents to divert their waste, such as replacing garbage chutes with compost chutes.

    7. Some participants noted that the City should investigate new technologies to use waste as a renewable energy. In this vein, there was mixed opinions about the environmental benefits of waste incineration.

    How are we incorporating feedback?

    Input is being used to:

    Draft a vision, guiding principles and goals for the Waste Plan that will help us establish where we want to be in 30 years time and the outcomes needed in order to make the vision a reality.

    Inform the development of a long list of draft options for the Waste Plan. These options will be recommended policies and programs that will seek to maximize how to avoid, reduce, reuse, and recycle waste and manage material that is left over.

    Help develop an evaluation tool for assessing this long list of options using a triple bottom line approach (i.e., the environmental, social and financial considerations of each option).

    What are the next steps?

    Once options have been developed for the Waste Plan, they will be assessed using the triple bottom line evaluation tool. The resulting short list of options will be consulted on during the next engagement series, that will start in 2021.


Page last updated: 15 September 2021, 09:32