Meet the new waste col­lec­tor

Miller Waste Sys­tems aims for ‘seam­less’ tran­si­tion in Oc­to­ber

The Standard (St. Catharines) - - LOCAL - GORD HOWARD THE ST. CATHARINES STAN­DARD Gord Howard is a St. Cathari­nes­based re­porter with the Stan­dard. Reach him via email: gord.howard@ni­a­garadailie­s.com

Box it. Bin it. Sort it.

Niagara’s new slo­gan for its waste man­age­ment pro­gram — as well as some of the ap­prox­i­mately 70 brand new trucks one of its new col­lec­tors, Miller Waste Sys­tems, will use — were rolled out Wed­nes­day in Niagara-on-the-lake.

Two com­pa­nies, Miller and GFL En­vi­ron­men­tal, will take over waste col­lec­tion for the Re­gion start­ing Oct. 19, the same day Niagara moves to bi­weekly trash col­lec­tion.

The new slo­gan will adorn the sides of the trucks, re­plac­ing the old one that for the past 10 years has asked res­i­dents to Re­think Your Waste.

“We want the tran­si­tion to be as seam­less as pos­si­ble” when Miller and GFL take over from the for­mer con­trac­tor, Emterra, said Miller CEO Blair Mcarthur.

“We want it to be like the light switch is turned on and for res­i­dents to know that they put their garbage out, by (mid-af­ter­noon) their garbage is picked up, their re­cy­clables are picked up in a clean, pro­fes­sional man­ner.”

When the new con­tract takes ef­fect Oct. 19, GFL will han­dle col­lec­tions in Thorold, Grimsby, West Lin­coln, Lin­coln, Pel­ham and Wain­fleet.

Miller will cover St. Catharines, Niagara Falls, Wel­land, Fort Erie, Niagara-on-the-lake and Port Col­borne, stop­ping at about 112,000 ad­dresses each week for pick­ups.

It will have be­tween 100 and 125 em­ploy­ees based at its Town­line Road of­fice, garage and yard.

Mcarthur said his firm has ap­prox­i­mately 70 new col­lec­tion trucks, all diesel, that cost be­tween $225,000 and $300,000 apiece and re­quire driv­ers to un­dergo 55 hours of train­ing.

“They have all the new­est tech­nol­ogy. They have a re­gen­er­a­tion sys­tem where the ex­haust goes through a sys­tem where the par­tic­u­late is burned be­fore the ex­haust goes out … these are state of the art.”

The new slo­gan re­flects the Re­gion’s push to get res­i­dents to in­crease their re­cy­cling and com­post­ing ef­forts as the Oct. 19 start date for col­lect­ing garbage only ev­ery sec­ond week nears.

Re­cy­clables and com­post will still be picked up once a week.

“The whole ra­tio­nale is to get the ma­te­ri­als out of the garbage (stream) so you have a longer life” for the land­fills Niagara sends its trash to, said St. Catharines re­gional coun­cil­lor Tim Rigby, who chairs the Re­gion’s pub­lic works com­mit­tee.

Cur­rently, Niagara’s di­ver­sion rate is about 57 per cent, he said, but the goal is to even­tu­ally re­move 65 per cent of waste be­fore it goes to land­fill.

On Wed­nes­day, Niagara Re­gion Chair Jim Bradley called the goal “am­bi­tious, but I think achiev­able.”

The new slo­gan, com­bined with re­duced trash col­lec­tion dates, “re­ally is a call to ac­tion for res­i­dents and busi­nesses to sort their re­cy­clables,” said Cather­ine Haber­mebl, the Re­gion’s

di­rec­tor of waste man­age­ment ser­vices.

Mcarthur said his com­pany has worked with the out­go­ing con­trac­tor, Emterra, as it pre­pares to start col­lec­tions.

Last year, Miller’s sis­ter com­pany, Es­carp­ment Re­new­ables, ac­quired an or­gan­ics pro­cess­ing plant in Grimsby.

It is be­ing retro­fit­ted to be what Miller pres­i­dent De­nis Goulet called “a state of the art fa­cil­ity pro­duc­ing elec­tric­ity and fed­er­ally cer­ti­fied high­grade nat­u­ral fer­til­izer for use on lo­cal agri­cul­tural lands.”

More in­for­ma­tion on changes to Niagara’s waste col­lec­tion pro­gram is on­line at Ni­a­garare­gion.ca/waste.

JULIE JOCSAK TORSTAR

Niagara Re­gion staffer Ash­ley North­cotte hands out a hat dur­ing an event Wed­nes­day to in­tro­duce Miller Waste Sys­tems as one of the re­gion’s new waste man­age­ment providers.

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