CIF Connections Masthead

Issue 7: October 2010

CIF Support Approved by WDO for 2011: What Are Your Top Priorities?

With the recent release of Waste Diversion Ontario’s (WDO) 2009 Datacall information, we’re seeing clear evidence of the impact of the recent recession. WDO’s Datacall report shows a 10.8% increase in gross blue box costs for 2009, coupled with tonnages that dropped to levels last seen in 2005. Taking into account lower revenues from marketed material, the result was an astonishing 42% increase in net costs from 2008 to 2009.

Evidence of recovery in 2010 is encouraging; however, we know that printed paper tonnage will remain low as we try to increase plastic packaging recycling. This will again lead to challenging financial conditions as the blue box system loses less expensive, high volume paper to a huge number of plastic containers that weigh little and are costly to sort. Municipalities and industry stewards will continue to focus on finding innovative solutions and seeking to make blue box recycling in Ontario the best in the world as we move through 2011 and 2012.

This summer, WDO’s Board recognized the great projects and operational improvements that municipalities have carried out with the support of the Continuous Improvement Fund (CIF). The WDO has approved an additional $9 million in new CIF funding for 2011, which will allow municipalities to adopt better and best practices and find ways to control costs while increasing recycling rates.

To date, the CIF has awarded more than $25 million in funding for over 250 approved municipal projects. Many of these projects will be fully implemented in 2010 and 2011, and will result in program improvements which should be evident in future WDO Datacalls.

The CIF is in the process of developing its funding priorities for 2011. We plan to issue another Request for Expressions of Interest (REOI) for municipal projects in January as a follow-up to the successful REOI in 2010. I encourage you to give me a call or send me an email with any funding priorities that you believe will lead to the greatest improvements in our blue box system. The CIF Committee will finalize the priorities in December.

In previous issues, we have reported on projects that were just beginning or in progress. With this issue, we are also pleased to report more results of projects that are now complete. Please take a few minutes to review the other stories in this issue of Connections to learn more about some of the great work municipalities are doing in an effort to better their programs.


Andy Campbell, CIF Program Director or 705-719-7913

New & Noteworthy

  • Interested in Helping to Shape Classroom Recycling Infrastructure and Curriculum? Call Us.

Ontario schools are rich in two elements essential to successful recycling. One is materials—paper, cardboard, aseptic packaging, cans and bottles. The other is young minds that are eager to absorb information and that are forming attitudes and opinions on topics which may include recycling and resource utilization.

With that in mind, several municipalities have contacted the CIF about tapping into opportunities to capture school-sourced materials while at the same time establishing an experiential/information based curriculum that promotes lifelong ‘pro-recycling’ behaviour.

A project has started in Simcoe County and the CIF wants to use this opportunity to develop a framework for classroom collection infrastructure and education. This will provide information to help undertand the opportunities and issues associated with municipal involvement in working with the Province and local school boards for recycling.

Once results are in hand, the next step will be to assess the value of this initiative for continued funding in 2011. If there is interest, the longer-term objective would be to work with the province to update the course curriculum with materials that could be adapted and used province wide to advance recycling program goals.

We’d like to hear from you!

  • Should this be an area of further CIF funding in 2011?
  • Are you interested in sitting on a steering committee to develop a course curriculum and a standardized approach to service delivery for Ontario schools?

We are actively seeking input and hope you will share your thoughts. Please contact Mike Birett at
905-936-5661 or email:

Project Reports

  • Cart Tender Awarded to Rehrig Pacific Saves Municipalities Time and Money

The CIF has awarded a tender to Rehrig Pacific Company to supply and deliver 95-gallon carts, using a co-operative approach that promises to save municipalities time and money.

The original tender included six municipalities (Sarnia, Niagara Region, London, St. Thomas, Oxford County and Woodstock); however, it was written to enable other municipalities to ‘piggyback’ on its terms and to benefit from the competitive price without having to commit staff time to administer a tender process.

The benefits of the co-operative tender are substantial, including:

  • costs of $47 per cart
  • radio frequency identification (RFID) technology with access to the on-line C.A.R.T.S. (Container Asset Recovery Tracking System) program
  • full 10 year warranty, and
  • delivery charges are included in the base price within the Greater Toronto Area and Southwestern Ontario. (Municipalities outside these areas pay the base plus nominal shipping costs.)

“We have achieved considerable savings - both time and money - by cooperating in this tender process,” commented St. Thomas’ Waste Management Coordinator, Michelle Shannon. “It’s also satisfying to know that even a smaller program such as St. Thomas, can contribute to the overall purchasing power to assist other municipalities.”

We hope this will be the first of several cooperative purchasing arrangements among municipalities. Anyone considering a cart purchase should also look at switching from stick-on labels to in-mould labels (IML) that offer many advantages. Applied during the manufacturing process and imbedded in the plastic cart, IML are peel-proof and eliminate staff time in labeling carts when they are delivered. As we know all too well, applying labels in mid-January is nearly impossible!

Whether you are providing carts for single or for multi-family recycling you may be eligible for CIF funding and substantial savings from co-operative purchasing. To find out more and for details on the cart tender, please contact Anne Boyd: 519-661-2500 ext 7304 or

  • CIF Energy Audit Program Wraps Up
  • Response to the CIF’s ESCO (energy auditing) service for municipal infrastructure installations that manage blue box materials resulted in REOI applications from several municipalities. With many blue box MRFs and transfer stations that date back to the early 1990s, facility energy upgrades with quick paybacks that meet CIF funding requirements are often possible. Through the ESCO project, the CIF offered funding for up to 50% of any retrofits identified in the audit that met standard funding criteria.

    The CIF approved funding for ESCO audits in Guelph, Northumberland, Waterloo, Bluewater and Essex Windsor. A final application is under consideration for the Ottawa Valley Waste Recovery Centre.

    “ESCO audits have identified diverse measures to promote energy savings and a healthier working environment at several facilities” said CIF Manager, Mike Birett. "Recommendations range from mechanical and lighting efficiency measures to renewable energy opportunities and green house gas emission reductions. With that said, we were also reminded that many municipalities are already running efficient facilities capable of competing with the private sector in an EPR environment."

    The County of Northumberland has recently received its ESCO report and is already planning next steps for its 14 year old MRF. "We’re starting up a pilot project now to retrofit lighting. With a full retrofit, we expect to reduce demand and save more than $4000 per year, at the same time as we upgrade overall lighting conditions throughout the MRF." says Karl Allen, Plant Manager at Northumberland County. "Our ESCO report provided all the information we need to design this program and prepare for future energy reduction initiatives."

    Communities that are interested in energy saving opportunities can look to the ESCO reports for Northumberland and Guelph for a range of initiatives. As an additional measure, we suggest that you consider the potential revenue generating opportunities that exist under the current OPA FIT and MICROFIT programs to generate income through solar mounted systems as was suggested in Guelph. For more information, contact Mike Birett:

  • CIF Releases Report Template for Multi-Residential Best Practices Projects
  • The most difficult part of any project can be the reporting – not because reports are difficult to write but with many competing priorities, time and energy are at a premium. At the CIF, we know this can be a challenge and have developed another tool in our best practice series to help municipalities plan for reporting and streamline this task for multi-residential recycling projects.

    We have just published a ‘Final Report Template’ that municipal staff and project consultants can customize to complete the final report as required by CIF for approved multi-residential best practice projects.

    The template, which comes complete with a report structure, generic phrasing, tables and companion spreadsheets is available online. Municipalities will also find the template a useful guide to project implementation. Municipal staff who are taking part in these projects would do well to become familiar with the contents of the template and be prepared to generate the report information along these lines. As with all CIF projects, 25% of total approved funding is held back until the final report is submitted and approved and this template makes it easy for all programs to go the distance!

    This new tool in the CIF multi-residential tool-kit is a companion piece for the funding policy, implementation guidelines, promotion and education materials, and purchasing agreement for recycling carts. And we're not finished….up next is the multi-residential database that will be available later this year. Please stay tuned, and for more information, contact Anne Boyd:
    519-661-2500 ext 7304 or

  • Developing a Blue Box Plan is a Recycling Best Practice: Does Your Program Have Its Plan in Place?
  • Despite a dedicated effort in 2010 to bring 100% of municipalities into compliance with WDO best practice # 1 – "development and implementation of an up-to-date blue box recycling plan" – just over half of the 215 reporting municipal programs will end this year without blue box plans completed or underway.

    The CIF set aside $1.75 million in the 2010 budget to assist municipalities to develop blue box recycling plans. Through 2010, many municipalities have taken advantage of the funding support. More than 40 programs applied for funding through the Request for Expressions of Interest in Priority Projects this spring. Subsequently, the CIF has developed a streamlined application form that is easy to complete and encourages programs to take advantage of the enhanced funding support for plan development. This past spring, the CIF also delivered eight waste recycling strategy information sessions across the province to explain the Waste Recycling Strategy Guideline and Template that programs can use in their planning initiatives.

    Overall 100 communities have applied to the CIF and received funding to develop their plans. The positive impact of the CIF assistance is clear, yet we remain far from our goal of 100% compliance by the end of 2010.

    What's left and why does it matter?

    At the end of 2010, almost $1 million in CIF funding will still be available to communities to develop recycling plans. Of the municipalities that do not have blue box plans in place or underway, the vast majority represent small programs that each account for less than 1,000 tonnes per year each of blue box materials. In combination though, this amounts to about 38,000 tonnes or 4% of the provincial total.

    “Having a current blue box recycling plan isn’t only about operating efficient programs and ticking off the box in the WDO’s Datacall,” said Clayton Sampson, CIF project manager, “it’s about ensuring that a municipality is eligible for the maximum amount of blue box funding.”

    Municipalities that lack a blue box plan in 2010 may lose up to 5% of their WDO blue box funding.

    Continuing efforts for full compliance

    The CIF is working proactively to contact programs that do not have a recycling plan in place. Meeting this best practice provides an excellent opportunity for each blue box program to chart a course and vision for the future and to maximize annual program funding.

    If your program is one of those that lacks a current blue box plan, we urge you to apply for the funding for plan development. CIF staff members are available to provide information and support your efforts.

    For more information, please contact Clayton Sampson:

  • Report on Alternate Fuel Collection Vehicles Points to Significant Fuel Cost Savings with a Short Pay-back Period
  • The CIF commissioned a review of alternative fuel (AF) collection vehicles which identifies pros, cons and general operating guidelines for four types of AF vehicles:

    • compressed natural gas
    • bio diesel
    • electric hydro launch assist and
    • hydraulic launch assist.

The technology review identifies best applications for the different vehicles. It suggests that while some federal or provincial funding may be available to offset costs, incentives of $30,000 to $50,000 will likely be necessary to encourage uptake. With current diesel pricing and fuel burn savings, the return on investment is estimated to range from 7 to 15 years.

According to report author, Gary Everett of the Emerald Group, "while there are clear advantages to AF technology, this is definitely not a 'one type fits all' solution. Any community that is considering integrating AF collection into its fleet will need to carefully assess each AF vehicle to match its capability to their needs."

The report highlights two approaches to integrating AF vehicles in contracts, recommending that where possible, municipalities ask for proposals with preference given to AF vehicles and an agreement to negotiate a mutually satisfactory incentive with the successful bidder. Communities that are considering integrating AF vehicles will want to review the sample contract and consider tailoring its clauses for their use. For more information, please review: Alternate Fuel Collection Vehicles Report .

Markets News

  • New Canadian-based Polystyrene Processor Seeks Material

EPS Recycling Solutions is a Canadian based processor that is seeking foam and rigid polystyrene for its new operation in Concord, Ontario (at the north end of Toronto).

EPS is seeking polystyrene with PET or PVC contamination with prepaid shipping (by municipalities) but with no processing fee, for the time being at least. The company reports that incoming plastics are being recycled to create construction materials such as crown molding.

For more information or to book a shipment, contact Dusty Burke: or 905-201-2499.

Events Update

  • Ontario Recycler Workshop Comes to Kitchener-Waterloo on November 25

Mark your calendars for the fall Ontario Recycler Workshop, which will take place in Kitchener-Waterloo on Thursday November 25. Registration is open now and we will soon distribute invitations to all interested stakeholders. Click to read full story

This fall's Ontario Recycler Workshop is a full day session will take place in Kitchener-Waterloo. As always, for those who can't attend in person, the session will also be available by webcast.

The program will include updates from Waste Diversion Ontario, the Association of Municipalities of Ontario and Stewardship Ontario. Other features will include a workshop on defining and implementing additional better and best practices, a report on recycling as a municipal utility along with project updates on multi-residential recycling, large urban projects and more.

The CIF is also planning a full day workshop on how to successfully add more plastics to your municipal program on Wednesday, November 24. Additional details about both events will soon be available. All information will be posted at the ORW page of the CIF website.

In This Issue

Interested in Helping to Shape Classroom Recycling Infrastructure and Curriculum? Call Us.

Cart Tender Awarded to Rehrig Pacific Saves Municipalities Time and Money

CIF Energy Audit Program Wraps Up

CIF Releases Report Template for Multi-Residential Best Practices Projects

Developing a Blue Box Plan is a Recycling Best Practice: Does Your Program Have Its Plan in Place?

Report on Alternate Fuel Collection Vehicles Points to Significant Fuel Cost Savings with a Short Pay-back Period

New Canadian-based Polystyrene Processor Seeks Material

Ontario Recycler Workshop Comes to Kitchener-Waterloo on November 25

For more information or to provide comments on any item included in "CIF Connections!" please contact: Andy Campbell, Program Director by phone at 705-719-7913 or by email:


The CIF will fund 50% of MR container - carts or front end bins Preparing MR carts for collection