In November 2016, the Waste Diversion Act was repealed and replaced by the Waste-Free Ontario Act, which includes both the Waste Diversion Transition Act and the Resource Recovery and Circular Economy Act.

This new legislation will have a major impact on municipal waste management and, most importantly, on waste diversion programs you may operate now or have planned for the future.

In particular, the cost to run programs for collecting and recycling paper products and packaging is now split 50/50 between municipalities and the companies that produce these items. The new legislation will transfer to full producer responsibility.

Municipal blue box recycling programs will undergo some of the biggest changes, as municipalities will have new options – to act as service providers to producers who are required to pay for these programs, to work with private service providers, or opt out from providing service altogether.

It is in the best interest of municipal governments that this work gets done as quickly as possible, as the current proposal to transition the Blue Box is expected to take at least another six years and will cost municipalities an estimated $780 million. Municipalities can save $130 million per year by accelerating this transition.
 

The Future of the Blue Box graphic