How to Sort Your Trash: What Goes Where?
AUGUST 25, 2022
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It is common knowledge that we should throw our trash in the right place. However, when it comes to sorting, some of us seem to ignore the chore.


Properly sorting your waste can save money, reduce the amount of garbage going to landfill, increase recycled material, and ultimately benefit the environment. Here's a quick guide to easily segregate trash.


Disclaimer: these information is based on Vancouver and British Columbia waste systems. Please cross-check and do your own research if you're from a different city, province, or country.



Styrofoam, mattress, furniture, electronics and appliances: bring to Zero Waste Centers or Recycling Depots 

Clothing: donate, sell, or consign 

Paper, flyers, magazines, paper packaging, cardboard: place in paper bins/reusable yellow bag or bring to Recycling Depots

Glass bottles and jars: place in grey glass only bin or bring to Recycling Depots

Plastic containers, cartons, paper cups, aluminum and steel containers: place in blue container bin or bring to Recycling Depots


Compostable and Organics

The following items go to green bins

Food scraps: raw and cooked food, plate scrapings, leftovers, expired food, meat, bones, dairy products, shells, tea bags, coffee grounds and filters, small volume of fat/oil/grease absorbed in newspaper  

Food soiled paper: paper napkins/towels, paper plates/dishes, food boxes with residue

Yard waste: leaves, trimmings, weeds, plants

Other: clean wood waste, wooden utensils/sticks, sawdust (paper-bagged), Christmas trees 

Never place plastic and plastic bags even those labelled "biodegradable" or "compostable" in green bins. Instead, use newspaper, empty cereal boxes, or paper bags. 



Tissue, pet waste/litter, diapers, vacuum/dryer lint, potato chip bags, Ziplock bags, bubble wrap, and candy wrappers are standard examples of garbage that goes to black bins.



Item not listed? Use helpful resources like Waste Wizard



City of Vancouver

Metro Vancouver