Garbage and recycling rules are confusing. Each city can have different recycling rules, and Toronto regularly adds new things to the Blue Bin to recycle more.
Even more confusing is that what you can recycle at home is different from what you can recycle at work, or at the shopping mall.
We know that recycling and garbage rules are confusing. Studies and polls back it up. The average person just can’t keep up with recycling rules at home, at work and in public spaces. When you add the complicated recycling symbols on packages, it’s clear that a lot more education will go a long way.
Take TEA's Waste Free Challenge #3 - Use Toronto's Trash Tools to take steps to educate yourself on waste rules.
Last year, we asked TEA members to share stories about why recycling is so confusing:
One resident commented, "Living in an apartment building after having been in houses for 30 years has opened my eyes up to a big gap in residents' knowledge, and ability to separate and direct waste correctly."
Another resident said, "I live in a house with several older persons. They want to be eco-friendly, but they find the compost, recycling and garbage very complicated."
A condo resident said, "My wife and I have been recycling for over forty years and we still aren't sure about what is acceptable."
The good news is that the City of Toronto has created great educational tools to help residents sort waste better. You can take steps to educate yourself by Using Toronto's Trash Tools.
However, research shows that ongoing education and active outreach is needed to reinforce waste and recycling rules. The Vity's 3R's Ambassador program is one great example of a Toronto program to engage residents of high rise buildings to do outreach on waste and recycling.
Do you find waste and recycling rules confusing?