The Business Waste Diversion Strategy was approved by City Council to reduce commercial and industrial waste in Lethbridge by 45% by 2030. The strategy, along with new residential curbside recycling programs, ensures that everyone works together to reduce waste in our city.
New for 2020
There are changes coming July 1st 2020 to the way waste is managed by business or organizations in Lethbridge. Similar to the introduction of inspections and surcharges, a grace window, until January 1, 2021, will be added to allow companies time to adjust to the new program. The City’s waste reduction target aims to reduce waste coming from Lethbridge by half. Since businesses in Lethbridge generate over 60% of waste going to the landfill, it is critical that everyone does their part to achieve these goals. This is the next step in the implementation of our business waste reduction strategy.
Click the link below for more information on the Mandatory Recycling Program.
In an effort to divert recyclable materials from the landfill, tipping rates will be adjusted annually to encourage recycling of materials rather than landfill disposal.
Inspections and surcharges
July 1, 2019, we will begin inspecting loads from businesses at the Lethbridge Waste and Recycling Centre for recyclable materials (referred to as Designated Materials in Bylaw 6146). A nine month grace period will run from July through the end of February. During this grace period, inspections will take place and feedback will be provided to waste haulers, but no surcharges will be given.
As of March 1, 2020, businesses unloading waste at the Lethbridge Waste and Recycling Centre will be charged $50 per tonne on the entire load if the load contains a combination of more than 25% commercially recyclable materials.
The Business Waste Diversion Strategy calls for surcharges on organic materials such as food waste, tree branches, leaves, etc. in 2022. Further notifications will be made prior to adding new materials to the recyclables list.
How will this work?
When you or your waste hauler bring a load of garbage into the facility, the load may be inspected for recyclable materials that shouldn't be in the garbage. Loads containing more than 25% of recyclable materials, measured on a weight or volume basis, will be assessed a surcharge of $50 per tonne for the entire load.
What's Recyclable in the Industrial, Commercial and Construction sectors?
Our goal is to have businesses and organizations recycling the same materials that residents do plus materials specific to commercial waste such as scrap metal, asphalt shingles and unprocessed wood. The Lethbridge Waste and Recycling Centre has a new Commercial Drop-Off (CDO) area for all of these recyclable materials.
Business Waste Diversion Strategy
Waste Diversion Policy, which directed Waste & Recycling Services to develop waste diversion and waste disposal targets for the residential sector; construction and demolition sector; and the industrial, commercial, and institutional sector.
On July 20, 2015, City Council approved the
The purpose of this policy was to provide guidelines to encourage the efficient use of natural resources, with the guiding principle to treat the waste stream as "Resource not Waste." This fits with the goal of City Council's Environmental Policy to minimize Lethbridge's ecological footprint.
In 2008, a Comprehensive Waste Diversion/Waste Prevention Master Plan was completed by Sonnevera International Corp. to guide the future of waste diversion and to conserve landfill space within the City of Lethbridge. The plan reviewed all sectors of waste generation, and found that businesses create almost three quarters of all waste landfilled in Lethbridge. The Master plan recommended that the business sector (including all non-residential) be a priority target for waste reduction and diversion initiatives.
In 2013, the City of Lethbridge Waste & Recycling Services retained EBA Engineering Consultants Ltd. (now Tetra Tech EBA Inc.) to conduct a Stakeholder Engagement Project for the ICI and C&D sectors. In partnership with Sonnevera and Ipsos Reid, separate stakeholder engagement and consultation sessions were conducted for both ICI and C&D sectors, involving waste generators, haulers and processors. This was done in order to have independent industry focuses and accurately gain insight into material specific diversion programs.
After the completion of the ICI Stakeholder Engagement Report in spring 2014, city administration began to implement an ICI Waste Diversion Strategy in alignment with City Council Strategic Goal #5. This strategy was presented to City Council and approved in the summer of 2015. City administration provided options for 5, 7, and 10 year implementation schedules. City Council requested that the strategy be implemented over a 5 year timeframe.
In 2018 we announced at city council the implementation of surcharges beginning in 2019.
In January 2019 businesses received letters (link letter to businesses/info graphic here) from the city detailing the new program. Information sessions were held with key stakeholders in the hauling and industrial sectors to inform them of the surcharge program and its effects. Because the surcharges most directly impact construction companies, all members of the Lethbridge Construction Association and BILD Lethbridge were contacted and informed of the upcoming changes. The City worked with a committee from BILD Lethbridge to find solutions to improve diversion within the home building sector.
In March 2020 information sessions were held for all businesses, haulers and processors to explain the upcoming Mandatory Recycling program, expected to begin July 1st.
For more information regarding the ICI Waste Diversion Strategy, please contact Alex Singbeil at 403-320-3141 or