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Become a Cart Rollout Expert

Learn how to sort your waste and use your new carts in one of our virtual education sessions.

The way we sort, set out and collect waste is changing. The City will provide all single-unit and some multi-unit homes with a garbage cart, a food scraps cart and a food scraps pail. Cart delivery and collection have begun for some areas of the city. 


Did you catch our March 2 livestream? We went over the new system and answered questions from Edmontonians about how to use the carts and sort waste.

Watch the recording on YouTube

The new system includes four collection services:

Food Scraps

Collected weekly from spring to fall, and every 2 weeks in the winter, using a cart provided by the City.

If you have spare room in your food scraps cart, you can top it up with yard waste as long as the lid can be fully closed.

Recycling

Collected in blue bags all year round on a weekly basis.
There are no changes to recycling collection.

Garbage

Collected every 2 weeks year-round, using a cart provided by the City.
Once you get the hang of sorting out your food scraps, yard waste and recycling, you’ll find that you have less garbage.

Yard Waste

Collected twice in spring and twice in fall in clear plastic bags or double-ply paper yard waste bags and/or bundles wrapped in biodegradable twine.

You can also top up your food scraps cart with yard waste or take it to an Eco Station for free between seasonal collection days.

Your Collection Schedule

Your New Carts

Cart Delivery and Collection Start Date

Carts are on their way!

Cart delivery has begun and will be complete in August 2021. All single-unit and some multi-unit homes will receive: 

  • Garbage cart (black)*
  • Food scraps cart (green)
  • Food scraps pail for in-home use
  • Information package including a new collection schedule

Some homes may receive their garbage cart and food scraps cart on different days in order to make delivery routes as efficient as possible. If you have not received both of your carts, your food scraps pail and your information package by your first week of collection, report missing items to 311 using our online form.

*You will receive a large (240L) garbage cart unless you submitted your small (120L) garbage cart request before February 12, 2021. You will be able to exchange your garbage cart size beginning April 6, 2021 or after you receive your carts, whichever is later.

Find your cart delivery and collection start dates

View dates as PDF

Your Information Package

To make sure you are prepared to use your carts, you will receive an Information Package with your carts.  This package will have a welcome brochure, What Goes Where poster, a collection calendar and a city map.

If your information package is missing any of these items, report it to 311 using our online form
 

Your New Collection Schedule

Most residents will receive their carts a few weeks before they need to start using them. We can’t collect waste from your new carts until our automated trucks are rolled out to your neighbourhood. Make sure you consult the city map and collection calendar you received with your carts to ensure you are setting out your carts on the correct day. 

You can also use the WasteWise tool to check your collection schedule at any time. Use it online or download the free app from Google Play or the Apple App Store.

Using Your Carts

Cart Placement and Use

Setting out your carts properly ensures that they can be picked up safely by our collectors. All waste should be set out by 7am on your collection day.

The best place to set out your carts will depend on your lot, but in general:

  • Place your cart at least 1 metre (3 feet) away from other carts, cars or other objects. Three metres (10 feet) of space is required between the top of the cart and overhead branches, wires, and so on.
    • Place carts at least 1.5 metres (5 feet) away from the point on the curb nearest any fire hydrants to ensure visibility in the case of an emergency.
  • Place your cart on level ground, with the back wheels facing towards the house or driveway. A slight slope is okay as long as the carts are upright and steady.
    • If your slope is quite steep, for front street collection you can set your carts out on the street against the curb. For back alley collection, you can set your carts out on a less sloped grassy area next to your alley.
  • Make sure the lid is fully closed.
  • Place recycling in blue bags nearby, at least 1 metre (3 feet) away from your carts. Do not set out any extra bags or cans of garbage or food waste. Excess waste will not be collected. 

Learn more about how to use, set out and store your carts, including tips for collection in alleys, cul-de-sacs and at the front street. 

Cart Use, Set Out and Storage


Damaged or Lost Carts

You can request repairs for damaged carts and report lost or stolen carts via our online form, or by calling 311.

If you find a cart that does not belong to you or your neighbours, please call 311 to report it.

Report Missed Collection

You can report a missed collection through the 311 app or the online form

In order to be collected, your waste must be set out correctly and by 7am on your collection day. Waste collectors will not be dispatched to pick up waste that was set out incorrectly or late. 


Assisted Waste Collection

The City offers an assisted waste collection service for residents who have difficulty getting their waste to the curb or lane.

Options are available for residents who need help managing cart-based collection. Learn more or submit your application.

Managing Excess Waste

Most residents will find that with proper sorting of food scraps, recycling and yard waste, the default (240L) or even the small (120L) garbage cart is sufficient for their household needs. 

Sometimes, personal or situational circumstances will result in a higher occasional or ongoing volume of garbage. 

The City offers free disposal at Eco Stations for occasional excess garbage (up to 2 clear bags) and yard waste.

An excess (360L) garbage cart program is available for residents with very large households or non-hazardous home healthcare waste.

Learn more about how to dispose of your excess waste

How to Set Out Your Carts

Seasonal Yard Waste Collection

Find Your Yard Waste Collection Days

Yard waste is collected seasonally, with two collections for each residence per season (spring and fall) on specific Mondays. 

Yard waste includes leaves, twigs, branches, fallen fruit, dead plants, grass and other plant material from your yard or garden. Learn more about sorting waste.

  • Check the city map (spring dates only) and collection calendar (fall dates only) that were delivered with your carts
  • Get your whole collection schedule by searching your address on the WasteWise tool, also available as an app for free download on Google Play or the Apple App Store
  • Because seasonal yard waste collection is being rolled out in phases with cart-based collection,  only residents in Phase 1 and 2 will have special yard waste collection days this spring. Refer to the city map to see which phase you’re in. Residents in phases 3-6 should continue setting out yard waste along with their other waste during this spring.

Setting Out Your Yard Waste

  • Set out yard waste by 7am on your seasonal yard waste collection day.
  • Set out yard waste in double-ply paper yard waste bags or clear plastic bags. Bags should not weigh more than 20 kg (44 lbs).
  • Materials over 0.30 metre (1 foot) need to be tied in bundles and set out beside the yard waste bags. Materials tied in bundles can be no longer than 1.2 metres (4 feet) and 0.75 metres (2.5 feet) in diameter.
  • Yard waste bags should be in good condition and packaged in a safe manner for the collector to handle. Paper bags must be rolled closed at the top, and clear plastic bags must be tied closed to prevent spills. 
  • Tree stumps and trunks are not accepted for curbside collection but can  be dropped off at an Eco Station for free.
  • There are no volume limits on yard waste collection. You may set out as many bags or bundles as you have, as long as they comply with the above restrictions. Yard waste is collected on Mondays and your carts and recycling are collected between Tuesdays and Fridays. You have the full waste set-out space for your yard waste. 

 

 

Yard Waste Explainer

Other Options for Yard Waste

If you have yard waste to dispose of between your seasonal collection days, you can:

  • Save it to set out on your next seasonal yard waste collection day. Plastic bags are recommended for long term storage, or storage outdoors where the bags may become wet. 
  • Top up your food scraps cart with yard waste. Make sure the lid can still close, and the material is not too tightly packed. It must be loose enough that it will not become stuck when the cart is tipped into the truck. 
  • Take yard waste to an Eco Station for free. You will be required to debag any yard waste in plastic bags, as plastics are not permitted in the yard waste bin. Yard waste in paper bags does not need to be debagged.
  • Go Bagless! Leaving grass clippings on the lawn when you mow, or “grasscycling”, is great for your lawn, and leaves you with less yard waste to manage.
  • Compost yard waste and certain kinds of food scraps at home for healthy soil.

Sort Your Waste

Consult the What Goes Where poster delivered with your carts or use the WasteWise tool to help you sort.


 

WasteWise

Take the guesswork out of sorting your waste.

You can also search your collection day and set up a collection reminder.
Use the tool online or download it from Google Play or the Apple App Store.

Food Scraps

All solid food waste is accepted in the food scraps cart, which is collected weekly from spring to fall, and every two weeks in the winter.

This includes:

  • Spoiled food
  • Scraps and peelings
  • Meat, fish and poultry
  • Bones and eggshells
  • Dairy products
  • Coffee grounds and tea
  • Food-soiled napkins and paper towels

All packaging must be removed.

Crumpled newspaper, paper bags and BPI/BNQ certified compostable bags may be used to line the cart and/or food scraps pail.

Yard waste and grass clippings can be added to the food scraps cart if you have extra space.

Material from the food scraps cart will be processed at the Anaerobic Digestion Facility and through contracted partners in the Edmonton region.

Garbage

Any materials that don't require special disposal at an Eco Station and don’t belong in your food scraps cart, blue bag or yard waste should go into your garbage cart.

Examples include non-recyclable packaging like coffee cups, plastic cutlery, chip bags, styrofoam, worn-out clothing, and diapers.

Reduce Your Garbage

To reduce your garbage, consider donating unwanted items in good condition to a local charity or reuse organization.

Reuse Directory

Recycling

Paper, newspaper, cardboard, tin cans, glass jars and bottles, plastic containers and bags are all acceptable items for any of our recycling programs, provided they are clean, loose and dry.

Blue Bags

  • Used for curbside and alley collection from single-unit and some multi-unit homes
  • Recycling is collected weekly
  • There is no bag limit 
  • Put all recyclables in the same bag

Yard Waste

Yard waste includes leaves, twigs, branches, fallen fruit, dead plants, grass and other plant material from your yard or garden.

Yard waste can be disposed of in three ways:

Top up your food scraps cart

  • Put yard waste in your food scraps cart, as long as the lid can close

Set yard waste out for seasonal collection

  • There are two yard waste collections per season for each residence (spring and fall with no volume limit)
  • Use clear plastic bags or double-ply paper bags
  • Bags should weigh no more than 20kg (44lbs)
  • Bags must be in good condition and safe for the collector to handle
  • Roll the top of paper bags closed to prevent spills
  • Materials over 0.30 m (1ft) need to be tied in bundles and set out beside the yard waste bags
  • Materials tied in bundles can be no longer than 1.2 m (4ft) and 0.75 m (2.5ft) in diameter
  • Tree stumps and trunks should be dropped off at an Eco Station

Bring yard waste to an Eco Station

  • Drop off excess yard waste at an Eco Station, free of charge
  • Residents are asked to debag the yard waste contents from plastic bags in the yard waste bin
  • Debagging is not needed if yard waste is brought in paper bags 

Cart Maintenance and Exchanges

Cart Repair and Replacement

Request maintenance for broken or damaged carts, report missing carts and request cart size exchanges online through our self-service form or by contacting 311.

Changing the Size of your Garbage Cart

Two standard sizes of garbage cart are available. If you did not submit a small (120L) garbage cart request before February 12, 2021, you will receive the default large (240L) garbage cart to begin with. We highly recommend you use the large cart for several weeks before requesting an exchange. Demonstration phase residents reported that in their experience it took 4-6 weeks to get used to the new system. 

The EPCOR account holder can submit a garbage cart size exchange request after the first set of carts has been delivered

Request a Garbage Cart Size Exchange

Excess Garbage Cart

An excess (360L) garbage cart program is available for residents with very large households or non-hazardous home healthcare waste. Applications open April 13, 2021.

Garbage Cart Sizes

Small (120L)
Garbage Cart

A small garbage cart is available for households that produce less waste. 

If you did not request a small cart before February 12, 2021 a large cart will be delivered to you. You will have the opportunity to exchange your garbage cart size after receiving your carts.  

If you are unsure which cart is best for you, we highly recommend you use the large cart for weeks to be sure before submitting the cart size exchange request.

Cost

The small garbage cart monthly rate will decrease by $3.90/month to $43.32/month starting in October 2021.

  • Suitable for households with 1-2 residents
  • Fits approximately 2-3 regular garbage bags
  • Picked up once every two weeks, year round
Dimensions
  • Height: 95cm (37.5")
  • Width: 47cm (18.5")
  • Depth: 62cm (24.5")
  • Volume: 120L

Large (240L)
Garbage Cart

The large garbage cart is the default size.

If you did not request a small cart before February 12, 2021 a large cart will be delivered to you. You will have the opportunity to exchange your garbage cart size after receiving your carts.

If you are unsure which cart is best for you, we highly recommend you use the large cart for weeks to be sure before submitting the cart size exchange request.
 

Cost

The large garbage cart monthly rate will increase by $1.10 to $48.32 starting in October 2021.

  • Suitable for households with 3 or more residents
  • Fits approximately 4-6 regular garbage bags
  • Picked up once every two weeks, year round
Dimensions 
  • Height: 111cm (43.5")
  • Width: 68cm (26.5")
  • Depth: 69cm (27")
  • Volume: 240L

Secondary Suites

If you have a legal secondary suite on your property that is registered with Waste Services, a set of carts will be delivered for each suite.

Property owners who have not registered their secondary suites with Waste Services will receive only 1 set of carts. 

Account holders can register their secondary suites with Waste Services by calling 780-496-5698. To receive both sets of carts at the beginning of cart collection, register at least 6 weeks before cart distribution starts in your area. Otherwise the carts for your suite will be delivered at a later date.

The account holder is responsible for any waste utility rate(s) associated with the property. A separate monthly waste rate will be applied for each registered secondary suite.

Cart Sharing

Cart sharing applications are currently closed and are expected to reopen in September 2021.

Residents participating in the cart sharing program share one set of carts (one large (240L) garbage cart and one food scraps cart) between all suites, and pay only one monthly waste utility rate.

FAQ

Why can’t I submit a small cart request after February 12?

The City and our cart vendor need to finalize the cart numbers by February 12, which is 30 calendar days before the cart distribution starts on March 15. This gives the City and the cart vendor time to finalize the cart supply, shipping and distribution plan and get fully prepared for the cart distribution.

If residents need a small cart, they can submit a cart size exchange request after they receive their carts or after April 6, whichever is later, at edmonton.ca/waste. The first cart size exchange request is free of charge. Additional size exchange requests will be associated with a one-time admin fee of $18.50.

Can I opt out of the program?

No, residents are not able to opt out of the Edmonton Cart Rollout. To help Edmonton reach the 90 percent diversion goal, every household’s participation will be important to make our new system a success. The City cannot do what a million Edmontonians can at home by sorting their waste.

If you think you may have trouble with cart-based collection due to mobility issues, you may be eligible for Assisted Waste Collection.

Will my rate increase because I am now getting carts?

Your monthly waste service fee in January – September 2021 will be the same as your 2020 rate ($47.22/month) for curbside collection customers.

Beginning October 2021
  • Customers with the default large (240L) garbage cart will see their monthly rate increase by $1.10 to $48.32
  • Customers who select the small (120L) garbage cart will see their rate decrease by $3.90/month to $43.32/month
  • The monthly price difference between the small and large garbage cart is $5/month
Why are we introducing carts instead of our current system?

Carts make waste collection more efficient and reduce workplace injuries significantly among waste collectors due to the reduced heavy and repetitive lifting, and not having to handle potentially dangerous waste (needles, etc.) with their hands. This standard practice also helps the City maintain stable utility rates and a competitive curbside collection market.

Learn more about Edmonton’s 25-year Waste Strategy.

Why are we introducing food scraps collection?

Having residents sort their food scraps and yard waste at home makes waste easier and more effective to process than the mixed materials we currently collect in black bags. Separate collection of these materials will allow us to produce higher quality compost and increase the diversion from landfills.

Separate collection of compostable materials is a standard practice in North America for its significant environmental benefits. Edmonton is one of the last few large municipalities transitioning to this standard.

Learn more about Edmonton’s 25-year Waste Strategy.

Can I opt out of food scraps cart collection if I compost at home?

Thank you for composting at home. Please continue to do so as home composting is good for your soil and benefits the environment.

You can use your food scraps cart for certain food scraps that you may find more challenging to compost at home such as dairy, meat and bones or if your home composter is full.
When these materials are collected in food scraps carts, they will be sent to a processing facility, where the technology kills pathogens and turns these materials into useful resources. Home composting options also have their limitations in the winter months.

Providing food scraps collection will ensure residents have a place to sort all organic materials no matter the time of year.

Will my collection day and time change?

Some residents may change to a new collection day and others will remain on the same one. If your collection day is changing, it will be reflected in the collection calendar you received with your cart.

All collection routes will be changing so your garbage collector may come at a new time. Please set out your waste by 7am on your scheduled collection day to ensure it is collected.

  • Food scraps cart  - picked up weekly from spring to fall and every 2 weeks in the winter
  • Garbage cart - picked up every 2 weeks
  • Yard waste - picked up seasonally, with 2 collections in the spring and 2 collections in the fall
  • Recycling - collected weekly all year round
What do I do with my existing garbage cans?

You may choose to use your existing garbage cans for other purposes such as storage. If you no longer require your existing garbage cans, clean them and bring them to a City Eco Station or Big Bin Event. Clean garbage cans will be accepted free of charge.

Will the City collect garbage placed in my current garbage cans?

With the implementation of cart-based collection, the City will only collect garbage from the carts provided by the City. Garbage set out in any other containers will not be collected.

What if I set out extra bags or use the wrong container?

The City will only collect garbage and food scraps set out in the carts provided by the City, on the specific collection days marked on the collection calendar.

  • If residents set out extra bags or their own garbage cans, they will not be collected
  • If residents set out a garbage cart on a food scraps cart collection day or vice versa, it will not be collected
  • Residents can set out unlimited blue recycling bags on their recycling collection day
  • Residents can set out unlimited yard waste on the seasonal yard waste collection days marked on their collection calendar
Can I use my own cart?

The City will provide carts in the Council-approved size, designed for use with the City’s automated collection vehicles. The City will not collect any carts that were not provided by the City.

Can I still use my garbage stand/enclosure?

Carts cannot be collected from garbage stands or enclosures, and most garbage stands are too small to fit carts for storage. 

If your carts fit, you are welcome to store them inside a garbage enclosure or on a stand when they are not in use, but for collection, carts need to be on level ground, not on a platform, garbage stand or on sloped ground.

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