Styrofoam, milk carton, yogurt container and batteries beside a mobile device with someone accessing
March 23, 2023 Uncategorized No Comments

Laurentian Valley, ON (March 23, 2023) – The Ottawa Valley Waste Recovery Centre (OVWRC) is reminding you that there is an easy way to find out what goes where when it comes to recycling, compost or garbage. Residents of Petawawa, Pembroke, Laurentian Valley and North Algona Wilberforce can search 100’s of items on-line to see if something can be recycled, composted, reused or disposed of.

The on-line search tool was launched in 2019 and since then over 12,000 users have searched for almost 20,000 items. Sue McCrae, OVWRC General Manager explains why this tool has been a valuable part of the Centre’s education program.  “It’s important to make sure residents have all the information they need to participate in the local waste management programs.  Residents can enter everything from aerosol cans to yarn and the search tool will explain how to properly dispose of those materials.”

 Currently, the top five searched items are Styrofoam, plastic bags, furniture, corrugated cardboard and milk cartons. McCrae explains how that information is used. “Knowing that Styrofoam is the number one searched item tells us that residents need more information on how to dispose of it in our area.  This allows us to increase our radio, newspaper and electronic messaging on this material type. Styrofoam is not recyclable in our program and must be placed in regular garbage.”

Elizabeth Graham, Communications Officer at the Ottawa Valley Waste Recovery Centre reviews the data provided by the search tool and is pleased to see the searches are reflective of current waste management programming. “In December, wrapping paper was in the top 10 searched items and recently, with the launch of the new light bulb recycling program, LED bulb was in the top 10.  That shows us that people are using the tool for seasonal items and to access new program information which is very important to the overall success of our waste management programs”. 

Laurentian Valley Mayor Steve Bennett, who is Chair of the Ottawa Valley Waste Management Board, is pleased that a digital method for residents to receive information on recycling is proving to be popular.  “It’s great to see the Centre providing residents with an easy-to-use on-line search tool. It allows residents to find out the right information quickly and easily so they can make sure they are sorting their waste correctly.” 

The search tool is designed and built by technology company ReCollect and similar search tools are in use across North America. The What Goes Where search tool can be accessed here.  It can be accessed both on desktop and mobile devices.  For those not able to access the search tool on-line, a printed waste sorting guide is available with the 2023/2024 collection schedules which were distributed in March.

Written by Elizabeth Graham
Elizabeth Graham has been the Communications Officer at Ottawa Valley Waste Recovery Centre since November 2001. She loves all things up-cycled and re-purposed and enjoys working and volunteering within the community.