Government of Nova Scotia Government of Nova Scotia Nova Scotia, Canada


Recycling and Waste

Residential Backyard and Curbside Composting

Garbage to Gold: The Solid Waste-Resource Management Strategy

Imagine, turning your garbage into gold. That is exactly what Nova Scotians are doing, and the credit for this transformation goes to the Province's Solid Waste-Resource Management Strategy.

In Nova Scotia, we have the will to reduce the quantity of waste requiring disposal by 50%. We have the vision to turn our organic waste into a product that enhances our soil, creating jobs and new business opportunities. To achieve our goals we have banned compostable organic material from disposal.

Compostable organicmaterial includes the following groups:

  • Food waste (including meat, fish, bones and dairy products);
  • Leaf and yard waste; and
  • Non-recyclable paper products.

Keeping these valuable materials out of disposal sites produces the following benefits:

  • Fewer and safer disposal sites;
  • Leachate reduction (landfill run-off);
  • Methane reduction (a global warming gas);
  • Job creation; and
  • A product to enhance soil (for the growth of stronger, healthier plants).

As you can see, we are turning a problem into an opportunity.

What it means to Nova Scotians?

Many Nova Scotians are already diverting their food and yard waste through backyard or curbside composting.

Backyard Composting

Composting in your backyard is one of the most environmentally friendly and cost effective ways to turn your waste into a valuable resource - compost. Combined with Enviro-Depot© or curbside recycling, backyard composting can divert up to 50% of your household's garbage.

Readily backyard compostable materials include:

  • Fruit and vegetable peelings;
  • Leaf and yard waste;
  • Baked goods, rice and pasta;
  • Tea bags;
  • Coffee grounds and filters; and
  • Egg shells.

Remember, no meat, fish, bones, dairy products or other oily food products.

Contact your municipality or Resource Recovery Fund Board (RRFB) Information Line at 1-800-665-LESS (5377) to find out how you can get started or improve your composting skills. Ask for an RRFB Backyard Composting booklet to discover the benefits of turning your waste into a valuable product to enhance your soil.

Curbside Collection/Centralized Composting

Many Nova Scotians now have access to curbside collection of compostable organic materials. Curbside collection programs accept everything that can go into your backyard composter plus meat, fish, bones, dairy products and some non-recyclable paper products.

Compostable materials collected at the curb are delivered to centralized composting facilities where contaminants are removed and the material is shredded and composted. The end product is used to enhance soil .

Combined with Enviro-Depot© or curbside recycling, curbside collection and centralized composting of organics can divert over 75% of your household's garbage. Contact your local municipality or 1-800-665-LESS (5377) to find out what your municipality accepts at the curb.

What it means to Nova Scotia?

Less waste means fewer and safer disposal sites, a cleaner environment and a stronger economy. Nova Scotia is moving into the next century with a sustainable vision and a will to ensure that our natural resources are protected and job opportunities are maximized for future generations.

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