Earth Hour City Challenge: Surrey – Takin’ care of business
By Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts
As the City of Surrey evolves into the region’s next metropolitan centre, we’re looking at innovative ways to advance new technologies, reduce energy consumption, and become more sustainable in our operations. One of the new programs that we’re really proud of is our new waste management program, which was launched in October 2012 and includes curbside organics collection.
Surrey is home some of the most dedicated and conscientious recyclers in the country and we want to establish a new North American standard for waste diversion. In the first month, the city was able to reduce landfill waste by 35%, so we’re well on our way to achieving our target of 75% diversion.
The new collection program also includes an entire fleet of compressed natural gas waste collection trucks. Replacing one diesel truck with a CNG truck is equivalent to taking 475 cars off the road!
The next major step in the program is to build Canada’s largest organics biofuel facility. It will process kitchen and yard waste into a renewable fuel, which will then be used to power our waste trucks.
Once the facility is operating, Surrey will be home to the only fully integrated organic waste management system in North America: curbside organics collection, a fleet of CNG trucks, and a facility to process organics into fuel.
Residents have responded really well to our new waste management program, and we’re thankful for their support and commitment. The changes will help create a cleaner city and provide environmental benefits to the entire region.
Vote for your favorite sustainable city as part of the Earth Hour City Challenge People’s Choice Award. Online voting runs from now until March 15th.