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Public Service Announcement
Compostable chip bags not accepted in Durham Region's Green Bin program
WHITBY, ON April 30, 2010 - Residents are asked to refrain from putting the new compostable chip bags in the green bin. Although they may state they are acceptable for use in municipal programs, these bags do not compost in most municipal composting systems.
Effective immediately, all Durham Region residents are asked not to put any chip bags, including those marked compostable, in the green bin.
Compostable chip bags may claim to be 100 per cent compostable, but they can take up to 13 weeks to compost. These bags contain three layers of polylactic acid (PLA), a corn starch-based product. The number of layers of PLA make the chip bags take a long time to break down. The compostable liner bags for the green bin are made of a similar material, but only contain one layer of PLA. The liner bags break down in one to three weeks, while the chip bags take approximately 13 weeks to decompose. As a result, the chip bags do not break down quickly enough in most municipal composting systems, including Durham's system.
Durham Region residents are encouraged to dispose of the new compostable chip bags, in backyard composters, which work at a slower rate than municipal systems; or these new chip bags, marked compostable, may also go in the garbage.
For more information on acceptable items in the Green Bin program, please visit the Waste Management section of the Region's website at www.durhamregionwaste.ca, email email@example.com, or call 905-579-5264 (toll-free at 1-800-667-5671).
Durham's waste diversion programs are successful because of the commitment of residents. Last year, Durham Region, along with Miller Waste Systems, was awarded the 2009 Composting System Gold Excellence Award for its composting program, and the way in which Miller Waste Systems processes these organics.
REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY OF DURHAM:
Joanne Paquette - Manager, Communications
905-668-7711 ext. 3732