Newmarket’s annual blue box campaign is back! This public educational campaign aims to remind residents to put waste in the right place by properly recycling items in the blue box. From August 16 to September 9, Town staff will be performing random visual inspections of materials placed at the curb for recycling to ensure only recyclable items are placed in the blue box.
“I would like to thank and recognize our community for always being environmentally conscious and for our continued efforts to divert waste from landfills. With waste generation rates stabilizing as we recover from the pandemic, and our Regional diversion rate continuing upward at 65.8 per cent, it is important that we continue to pay close attention to what is placed in our recycling blue boxes.” says Mayor John Taylor. “Each year as a region we have exceeded our diversion goals. In fact, in 2021 Newmarket, alongside York Region achieved the highest division rate in the GTA. Let’s continue this trend by putting waste in the right place to reduce blue box contamination.”
If Town staff have visited your area, residents can expect to see one of two different sets of door hangers left behind at the door. One door hanger will identify that there are items in the blue box that do not belong. The other door hanger will identify that residents are doing a good job with their recycling efforts. Please note that this is an educational program and no enforcement will be conducted by the staff member if the blue box is found to contain improper items. However, GFL may leave blue box at the curb if contamination is found as part of their regular set-out requirements with the Town.
Items placed in the blue box that are not accepted in the blue box program are considered contamination. This includes plastic shopping bags, plastic bags full of recyclables, newspapers still in their plastic sleeve, Styrofoam, take-out cups, black plastic, and any food or liquids left in containers.
Each municipality has its own set of rules of what is accepted for recycling. Residents are reminded to review what is accepted in Newmarket by reviewing the blue box recycling webpage. If you aren’t sure what goes where, use the Recycle Coach App on the website or download it onto your mobile device to find out.
In an effort to keep contamination rates low, residents are reminded to keep these blue box recycling tips in mind:
Disposable masks and gloves belong in the garbage, not the blue box.
Plastic bags, plastic wrap and plastic sleeve bags used for newspapers are not accepted in the blue box. Please remove and discard plastic sleeve bags before placing your newspaper in the blue box.
Remove all food residue from containers before recycling. Wipe or scrape food residue with a paper towel before placing the item in the blue box. The paper towel can be placed in the green bin.
Textiles (cloth items) do not belong in the blue box. Take these items to a textile recycling bin located at one of Newmarket’s facilities.
Plastic toys, batteries, medical waste, coffee pods and take out cups / Styrofoam take out containers do not belong in the blue box.
Do not overfill your blue box to the point of overflow. Flatten boxes to save space.
Place heavier items on top of lighter items in your blue box. This should help prevent lighter materials, such as paper, from blowing out of the bin and becoming litter.
Cardboard boxes can be placed out for collection beside your blue box if flattened and in securely tied bundles no larger than 36” x 36” x 8”.
Residents can exchange their broken blue box for free by calling Green For Life (GFL) at 1-866-421-5625 and scheduling a replacement bin exchange.
For more information, please visit newmarket.ca/wasteandrecycling