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Zero Waste Strategy

organics carts getting picked up

Recognizing the growing importance of addressing the impact of greenhouse gases and excess waste, the City of Surrey is taking action and developing a Zero Waste Strategy.

Get Involved

In August 2020, we surveyed 2,500 residents and received their feedback on how we can help the residents of Surrey on their way to zero waste.

Missed the survey? Submit your feedback to rethinkwaste@surrey.ca.

What is Zero Waste?

Zero waste is defined as all products being designed and managed so that no waste is sent to landfills and incinerators. All end products are reused, recycled or re-integrated into other products. In addition, zero waste emphasizes waste prevention as opposed to waste management. It focusses on restructuring production and distribution systems to eliminate waste.

Developing the Strategy

Our approach towards a zero waste strategy will include five key phases:

  1. Engage and consult with residents to better understand their challenges and concerns;
  2. Complete a waste composition study to learn more about the volume and types of waste disposed in Surrey;
  3. Conduct an extensive review of existing regulations and legislation;
  4. Review our programs and services; and
  5. Assess the options for new programs and services.

Background

To date, Surrey's programs and collection services have resulted in the City achieving 70% waste diversion and a decrease in landfill disposal tonnage by 30% in our residential collection services. As we look towards the future and align with other levels of government, we are looking to update our strategy to become the first community to achieve zero waste to landfill in Canada.

In May 2020, Council endorsed this initiative and asked staff to conduct research into best practices.

All levels of government are undertaking initiatives focused on managing and reducing waste. In Canada, there is a mix of regulatory authority over waste management and each level of government has a role to play to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills.

See our Single-Use Item Reduction Strategy and What Goes Where pages to learn more about our waste reduction efforts.