VISIONQUEST ENVIRONMENTAL STRATEGIES CORP. Clear Bag Garbage Program Implementation Toolkit: A municipal step-by-step guide (CIF Project #748) released. November 17th, 2015


ClearBagToolKitAurora, Ontario – The Continuous Improvement Fund (CIF), a technical division within Stewardship Ontario -  has made available the Clear Bag Garbage Program Implementation Toolkit: A municipal step-by-step-guide. (Project 748) on their website at: http://cif.wdo.ca/enews/connections/2015/issue26/clear-bag-guide.html.   Through funding support from CIF, VisionQuest Environmental Strategies Corp. officials – Michelle Fairbrother and Dave Douglas – were commissioned to formulate the toolkit document.


   In recent years, municipalities across Ontario (and Canada) have designed and implemented clear bag programs that require residents to use clear bags for garbage placement at the curb as a way to increase the diversion of recyclables, organics and other items out of the waste stream and also increase the safety of collectors being able to visualize contents for sharp objects.    
In Ontario, the City of Markham launched such a program in April 2013 and within six months saw their waste diversion achievements rise to 81% (from 70%) with overwhelming public support and participation.    In Nova Scotia a province with over forty five such municipal programs already in place, the Region of Halifax has experienced a 31% reduction in residential waste tonnage since launching their program in August, 2015.

 
clearbagtoolkit2Markham garbage collection vehicle with promotional graphics. PHOTO CREDIT: DOUGLAS

This new exciting resource offers municipalities with comprehensive information, key municipal colleague contacts, operational, financial and communications tools to assist to plan a similar program of their own without having to reinvent the wheel – a roadmap per say.
 
Residential curbside set-out in Markham under a clear bag garbage program. 

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PHOTO CREDIT: DOUGLAS


Having played a key roll in assisting other municipalities to design such programs, VisionQuest Environmental Strategies officials are recognized for having a solid understanding of the many components required for successful program launches, including an extensive network of retail partner contacts deemed essential to the success of such initiatives.

 

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Examples of retail listings of clear bags in Markham to support the municipal program.  PHOTOS CREDIT: DOUGLAS
“Clear bags offer a very cost effective alternative to capital intensive container and cart based systems, providing municipalities the ability to implement highly successful programs while minding tax payer dollars” says Dave Douglas, President – VisionQuest Environmental. “These programs extend well beyond the providing garbage containers as a way to divert more, addressing social attitudes and environmental sustainability” adds Michelle Fairbrother – Manager, Technical Support.
Having established a solid reputation as a technical leader providing municipalities and private corporations with the design and implementation of clear bag garbage strategies, VisionQuest Environmental Strategies Corp. officials continue to provide municipal governments with similar support across Canada.   The future remains clear.