Frequently Asked Questions

Garbage FAQs
What size garbage cart do I need?

The 245 L cart should have sufficient capacity for most customers, as it is equivalent to 3.2 bags of garbage.

The City has reviewed our garbage collection data and that of other municipalities and found that customers place an average of two to three bags at the curb on collection day. However, customers that regularly recycle paper products, milk jugs, and yard waste may find that the 175 L cart provides sufficient weekly capacity.

The smallest 120 L cart is for those customers that do not generate much garbage. These carts, which hold the equivalent of 1.5 bags of garbage, are more suited to single occupants, seniors, and customers who recycle and compost all recyclable paper products, milk jugs, and yard waste.

Container sizes and annual costs

How much do extra garbage bags cost?

Extra garbage stickers can be purchased for $2 at City Hall, Hasty Market, and all Safeway locations.

Only garbage that is inside the container with the lid completely closed will be collected. Place one sticker on each extra garbage bag and place bags on the ground beside your wheeled cart. Alternatively, garbage can be disposed of at the Mission Flats or Barnhartvale Landfills.

Landfill locations

What should I do with my yard and green waste?

The City strongly encourages residents to take green waste to the Bunker Road and Barnhartvale Yard Waste Sites or to the Cinnamon Ridge Compost Facility. Grass clippings are banned from curbside garbage collection. Search the Waste Wise Kamloops app to find out how to best dispose of your yard waste.

Yard Waste Site locations

Where should I store my garbage cart?

Most residents choose to store their carts in a convenient location such as their carport, garage, or at the side of their house. The footprint (dimensions at the base of the cart) is not appreciably larger than an average-sized garbage container.

Be Bear Smart

Where do I set out my garbage cart for collection?

The garbage carts should be placed on the curbside with the wheels against the gutter, the curb, or at the edge of the roadway by 7:00 a.m. on collection day. During bear season (April 1 - November 30), carts should not be placed at curb any earlier than 4:00 am.

Be Bear Smart

What kind of garbage can I put in the cart?

All regular household garbage may be placed inside the carts. Anything that is placed inside the cart must be able to fall freely when dumped.

Search the Waste Wise Kamloops app to find out how to properly dispose of hundreds of products.

Clean cardboard and newsprint are prohibited in your garbage cart, and should be placed in your recycling cart. Grass clippings are also prohibited from either your garbage or recycling cart. Other items that should not be placed in the containers include:

  • Dirt
  • Concrete
  • Flammable, Toxic or Hazardous Materials
  • Paint
  • Sod
  • Bricks
  • Hot ashes or Charcoal
  • Needles
  • Rocks
  • Metal
  • Construction
  • Materials
  • Solvents
  • Animal Waste (Offal)

Residents are encouraged to take advantage of the current recycling options available to them to reduce the amount of garbage they need to place at the curb. 

RecycleBC Program  Landfill, Recycling, and Yard Waste Sites

What provisions will be made for garbage collection for disabled residents?

If you have difficulty moving the cart to your collection point, you may apply for City assistance. If you medically qualify, City crews will move your cart to the collection point and return it at the end of collection day. Application forms are available by calling 250-828-3461.

Will the driver pick up my recycling/garbage at the same time each collection day?

There is no set time for collection in any given neighborhood; residents must ensure their carts are out by 7:00 am, when drivers begin collecting. Pick-up time in each neighborhood may vary depending on the driver, road conditions, equipment malfunctions, and various other issues.

Effective January 1, 2018, we are re-aligning our collection zones, which may change your collection day. This may also change the time of day that collection trucks may be in your area. Please check our new collection zone map, or sign up for collection day reminders using the Waste Wise Kamloops app.

What time should I put out my garbage?

All garbage should be placed on the curb no later than 7:00 am on collection days. Residents are reminded not to put garbage on the curb before 4 am on collection day from April 1 until November 30. Failure to do so can result in a $100.00 fine (as outlined in the Solid Waste and Recyclables Bylaw No. 40-59, 2011). 

Be Bear Smart

Recycling FAQs
Why did the City join RecycleBC?

As part of the RecycleBC program, the City of Kamloops collects printed paper and packaging (PPP) materials on behalf of RecycleBC and, in return, receives approximately $1.1 million annually. This revenue helps offset the City's recycling service costs and provides future opportunities for our solid waste program.

How does the RecycleBC program affect my service?

The RecycleBC program is expected to result in more material being recycled overall. Materials like glass and soft plastics require special handling and must be taken to a designated depot to be recycled to ensure they don't contaminate other materials. The end result will be that more materials are recycled from curbside collection. RecycleBC has clear guidelines as to what can and cannot be recycled, and ensures that markets exist for products that are included in its program.

Search the Waste Wise Kamloops app to find out if specific items are accepted in curbside recycling.

Recycling Guide

What materials are not accepted in the the RecycleBC program?

Glass and soft plastic (shopping bags, bread bags, and other plastic overwrap) are no longer accepted in curbside recycling carts or bins. However, these materials can be dropped off at one of three designated depots in Kamloops. New materials that are now accepted in curbside recycling carts include pizza boxes, empty aerosol cans. and paper pet food bags.

Search the Waste Wise Kamloops app to find out if specific items are accepted in curbside recycling.

Recycling Guide

Why is glass no longer accepted?

Glass can easily break during the collection and recycling processes, and is then more difficult to sort from other recyclables. This leads to an overall decrease in the amount of glass and other curbside recycling materials ultimately being recycled. Learn more from RecycleBC.

Why are film plastics no longer accepted?

Film plastics (shopping bags, bread bags and other plastic overwrap) mix with other recyclables during collection and are difficult to separate. Plastic bags collected with other materials also get caught up in processing equipment. Both of these issues lead to less film plastics and other materials being recycled. When plastic bags and overwrap are returned to one of the designated depots, staff can ensure material is empty, clean and dry and only the correct types of soft plastic are included. Learn more from RecycleBC.

Where do I recycle glass and film plastic?

Glass and film plastic can be taken to one of three designated depots for recycling.

  • General Grants Recycling Centre (North Shore) - 611 Fortune Drive
  • General Grants Recycling Centre (South Shore) - 963 Camosun Crescent
  • Lorne Street Bottle Depot - 270 Halston Avenue

Recycling Depots

Is any new material accepted in the RecycleBC program?

Yes, new items that can now be placed in curbside recycling carts include pizza boxes, empty aerosol cans, and paper pet food bags. The City will work with RecycleBC to identify additional items that may be acceptable for curbside collection in the future. Residents are encouraged to search the Waste Wise Kamloops app to find out if specific items are accepted in curbside recycling.

Recycling Guide

What material is accepted at the depots?

The two General Grants Recycling Centres (611 Fortune Drive and 963 Camosun Crescent) and the Lorne Street Bottle Depot (270 Halston Avenue) have been designated depots for RecycleBC since 2014. These depots collect many other items covered under various EPR programs, such as beverage containers, electronics, and paints. Through the RecycleBC program, residents can also recycle foam packaging (StyrofoamTM, expanded polystyrene) which includes clean foam food containers and trays (meat trays, egg cartons, cups, etc.) and foam cushion packaging (from electronics, small appliances, etc.). Residents can also drop off any items accepted in the curbside recycling program, but the material must be sorted into the appropriate bins at each depot. 

Search the Waste Wise Kamloops app to find out how to properly dispose of hundreds of items.

How can I recycle K-Cups and other coffee capsules?

A Keurig coffee machine is a wonderful thing. But the downside to the Keurig is all of those little, plastic k-cups piling up in the landfill.

Did you know the capsules from your single-serving coffee brewing system are recyclable? With a bit of elbow grease, you can fully or partially recycle Keurig K-Cups, Tassimo T-Discs, Verismo Pods, and Nespresso Capsules. After removing the coffee grounds - which can be composted - the packaging can be recycled as follows:

Keurig - the body is a #7 plastic and the foil lid is aluminum: both can be deposited in your recycle bin and the paper filter can be composted.
Verismo - the body is a #5 plastic and can be recycled in your recycle bin; however, the lids cannot! (polymer blend)
Nespresso - the body and lid are aluminum and can be recycled in your recycle bin

Compost FAQs
What is Cinnamon Ridge compost made from?

Cinnamon Ridge compost is made from 100% yard waste dropped off by residents at one of our three yard waste sites.

How long does it take to make compost?

On average it takes about 8 months for yard waste to become compost.

How is Cinnamon Ridge compost made?

Received yard waste is fed into a large grinder which chips the material into finer and smaller pieces.

The ground-up yard waste is then placed into large rows where natural bacteria start the breakdown process. Rows are turned by a mechanical turner (like a massive rototiller) about once a week to ensure uniform breakdown of materials and to provide oxygen to the bacteria in the windrow.

During turning, treated waste water effluent may be added to the compost rows if they seem too dry. This process continues for 3 to 12 months (depending on row composition and time of year) while the yard waste breaks down. Once the yard waste is deemed to have broken down enough, the material is placed through a large screener which removes larger debris and any plastics that may have been missed at the yard waste receiving end. Screened material is then ready for sale to the general public.

If I don't need a truck load of compost, can I get a smaller quantity?

Yes, you can bring smaller containers (garbage cans or Rubbermaid bins) and fill them yourselves with compost. Each container filled with compost costs $2.00.

I heard that Cinnamon Ridge compost is full of weed seeds. Is this true?

No, this is not true. Heat created by microorganisms during composting kills weed seeds and disease-causing organisms.

Temperatures of compost piles routinely reach 65°C (149°F) for consecutive days; high enough to kill weed seeds. To test this, a study was done a few years ago where cookie sheets filled with compost were placed in an office window and watered to see if anything would germinate. Nothing ever did. 

Compost is a great growing medium. If any weed seeds are blown onto your garden after you have added the compost, weeds are certainly bound to germinate. By their design, weed seeds flourish in disturbed soil, especially ones with nutrient rich compost added to it.

Can culled or windblown fruit be taken to the yardwaste drop off sites?

Yes, windblown or culled fruit from trees such as apple, peach, apricot, pear, cherry, and plum is considered acceptable leaf and yard waste. Halloween pumpkins can also be taken to the yard waste sites.

Is pet waste or farm manure added to the Cinnamon Ridge compost?

No, pet waste or farm manure is not allowed to be dropped off at yard waste sites or added to our compost.

Although we can't guarantee that no animal manure makes it into the yard waste people bring in, the City randomly tests a few compost piles a year to ensure that Fecal Coliform and Ecoli counts are well below accepted levels.

Is wastewater sludge added to the Cinnamon Ridge compost?

No, compost is made from 100% yard waste.

Up until a few years ago the City used to mix biosolids (wastewater sludge) with yard waste on half of the Cinnamon Ridge site. The biosolids compost met all strict health guidelines mandated by the Organic Matter Recycling Regulation and was certified as Class A Compost (compost that can be sold to the general public). 

Even with meeting the highest standards, the City chose not to make the biosolids compost available to the general public and was used internally by various City departments.

The City no longer uses biosolids at Cinnamon Ridge.

Is wastewater effluent used in the compost process?

Yes, wastewater effluent is used in the making of compost.

Wastewater effluent is pumped under the Thompson River to Cinnamon Ridge to be used for irrigation on farms in the area and to provide moisture for our compost. Water not pumped under the river for reuse is released directly into the river. Wastewater effluent is treated to the same level as its release point. So in this case, the wastewater is treated to the same water quality level as the Thompson River.

Is the Cinnamon Ridge compost contaminated with pesticides, as there is no control on what type of yard waste comes in?

Compost made from yard waste will contain some pesticide residues but very likely at untraceable levels.

In general, the commercial composting process is quite good at breaking down the modern pesticides that are used on landscapes today. When Cinnamon Ridge first opened up, the City tested compost for pesticides and herbicides for three consecutive years and no pesticides or herbicides were ever found.

Since then, the Pesticide Use Control Bylaw No. 26-4 was introduced, further reducing the amount of pesticides used in the city.

Can I bring noxious weeds like knapweed to the yard waste sites?

No. Noxious weeds should be bagged and placed in your garbage container or taken to the landfill for proper disposal.

This is due to the possible spread of weed seeds that may occur during transport and handling, which may contaminate our yard waste sites.

Is the Cinnamon Ridge compost tested for heavy metals and pathogens?

The City takes random samples for analysis each year.

The Organic Matter Recycling Regulation does not require testing for compost made strictly from 100% yard waste. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (responsible for compost-producing facilities under the Fertilizers Act) routinely takes compost samples to ensure acceptable levels of heavy metals.

Can I use 100% compost in my flower pots?

No, compost is a soil additive. Too much compost could be detrimental and may kill the plants.

Our Parks Department recommends compost to be mixed at a ratio of 3kg of compost to 7kg of soil. 

For top dressing of lawns, add 3 kg of compost per 1m2 of lawn or add 1/2 cm of compost to your lawn in the spring or fall, trying to spread the compost evenly. Don't smother the grass blades.

How much yard waste is used to make compost?

In 2012, almost 11,700 tonnes of yard waste was diverted from the landfill. Compost production used up more then 8000 tonnes of the yard waste. The remaining 3700 tonnes (wood waste) was used for Hog Fuel.

What is the Guaranteed Analysis of the compost produced at Cinnamon Ridge?

The Guaranteed Analysis is: 
Minimum Organic Matter (OM) = 35% 
Maximum Moisture Content = 35%

Where can I drop off my Christmas tree for composting?

You can drop off your Christmas tree at any one of our designated locations between December 27 and January 15.

Christmas Tree Recycling

Landfill FAQs
What is DLC waste?

Demolition, Land Clearing, and Construction Waste (DLC Waste) consists of largely inert solid waste, resulting from construction, remodelling, and demolition projects. Examples of specific materials include, but are not limited to, wood, concrete, scrap metal, asphalt shingles, gypsum, tile, or porcelain fixtures.

Search the Waste Wise Kamloops app to find out how to properly dispose of your DLC waste.

How can I lower my DLC disposal fees?

Separating and sorting all divertable or recyclable DLC material will result in lower disposal fees, and for most loads, result in significant savings.

Why are the DLC fees higher than regular waste?

The higher fees provide an incentive to reduce and recycle, while saving landfill space. Diverting material from the landfill saves space for material that truly belongs there and allows us to keep landfills open for as long as possible. It moves the cost of solid waste disposal away from the taxpayer and onto users.

DLC waste is not generated by everyone, so the cost of this service should be subsidized by the users and not taxpayers. The fee structure is aligned with surrounding Regional Districts and municipalities.