Automated cart waste collection system coming to Simcoe County
Simcoe County Council has approved an automated cart waste collection system, which will take effect November 2021.
The County of Simcoe manages curbside waste collections in its 16 member municipalities and works with a contracted external vendor to provide collection services. Curbside collection services will be provided by Miller Waste Systems under the new contract.
“We provide waste collection services to more than 150,000 households on a weekly basis,” said Warden George Cornell. “We’ve worked hard to correct some of the labour challenges we have experienced with our collections this past year, and this is an exciting step in enhancing our services to meet the needs and expectations of our residents. We join other larger municipalities in offering a cart system that will provide added convenience for residents and create extra space to grow our green bin and recycling programs and ultimately divert more materials from disposal.”
The county will distribute each household in the County of Simcoe with three new wheeled carts before the change takes effect in November 2021, which will include one cart for each material, sized appropriately, for bi-weekly recycling, garbage, and weekly organics (green bin). Changes to routes and collection days will also occur to maximize efficiency. The current frequency of collection, with garbage and recycling being collected on alternating weeks and green bins weekly, will continue under the new contract. Full details about the new system and schedule will be announced through a significant marketing and communications campaign in summer/fall 2021.
“Since starting bi-weekly garbage collection in February, our green bin tonnage collection has increased by as much as 50 per cent resulting in a decrease in garbage tonnage even though so many of us are staying home to manage the pandemic and generating and disposing all our wastes at home,” said Rob McCullough, Director of Solid Waste Management for the County of Simcoe. “Residents are adapting their waste habits, and as a collective County, we are increasing waste diversion benefiting the environment. We look forward to further enhancing our services and we thank our current contractor, and specifically their employees, for the difficult job they perform on our behalf.”
Many municipalities across Ontario and throughout North America have switched to the automated cart system.
This system utilizes a mechanical arm, on each collection vehicle, that picks up, empties and places the carts back on the curb with the driver rarely needing to leave the cab. The carts include wheels making them very convenient and easy to transfer to and from the curb. Key benefits include:
• Significantly reduced chance of injuries to drivers;
• Expansion of the labour force by removing the significant manual labour aspect from the job;
• Reduced litter from windblown materials through the use of large lidded carts for recycling;
• Increased and convenient storage capacity for recyclables and organic green bin materials, as the County works to increase diversion and reduce garbage.
Through an extensive RFP and procurement process the full contract has been awarded to Miller Waste Systems.
Miller Waste Systems has provided service to the county for leaf and yard waste collections and was integral in providing additional support to the County to help alleviate collection delays experienced during the 2019 collection problems that occurred under the County’s current collection contractor. Miller Waste Systems is a family owned business, which was founded in 1961 and has been operating in the waste management industry for 59 years. They have become a leader in waste management in Central and Eastern Canada. The contract includes a fleet of 91 new fully automated collection vehicles and increased technology to monitor waste set-outs and collection operations.
Residents are to continue to use the current accepted waste collection containers and methods until the new contract takes effect in November 2021, at which time carts will be mandatory and current containers and methods to set out materials will no longer be accepted.