Do What You Can (for Ontarians)

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Stewardship Ontario, the industry organization responsible for the Blue Box program and the Municipal Hazardous or Special Waste (MHSW) program, is making it easier for Ontarians to recycle old batteries, paint, solvents and other “household hazardous waste” with a new initiative under a new program called Do What You Can.

The Do What You Can program aims to more than double the amount of ‘hazardous’ or ‘special’ waste diverted from landfill over the next five years. The target is to divert more than 33,000 tonnes of potentially hazardous or special waste, up from the 16,000 tonnes currently collected. Materials targeted under the program include paint, solvents, non-rechargeable batteries, antifreeze, propane cylinders and other items commonly found in Ontario homes but which need special care when there are leftovers and used containers.

Did you know that…

– Before this program, municipalities paid the fee to dispose of these hazardous materials. Now, the brand owners and importers of these products are responsible for paying the fee. The fee is used to pay for the program including collection, transportation, reuse and recycling, processing, research and development, and consumer education.

– The companies that make and market these items are also working with municipalities and leading retailers to enhance recovery of potentially hazardous or special wastes by making the process much more convenient. This means consumers will be able to conveniently drop their hazardous products off at retails locations like Home Depot, RONA and Jiffy Lube.

– Red Lake is the northernmost Ontario community with an MHSW agreement, Spanish is the smallest municipality with a population of 740 and Toronto is the largest (population 1.9 million).

To find out how to recycle many different items, check out

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