Activism

Team Up to Clean Up

By Paul Vicari
Published April 04, 2012

The Team Up to Clean Up Spring Event is a major city-wide community clean up event that coincides with Earth Day and the Great American Cleanup. This annual city-wide spring clean up event is coordinated by City staff in partnership with Hamilton's Clean City Liaison Committee.

The Team Up to Clean Up Program is intended to help maintain beautification and cleanliness throughout areas of the City of Hamilton all year round. These areas include local neighbourhoods, municipal properties, community parks, trails, parking lots, alleyways, streets and so much more.

The program involves volunteers who are passionate about maintaining and beautifying a specific area of the city that they care about.

Special litter bags, recycling bags, work gloves and graffiti wipes will be provided.

Details are available on the City of Hamilton website at Team Up to Clean Up. You can also register online at Team Up to Clean Up Registration.

If you have questions about the Team Up to Clean Up program or need help filling out this form, email us at clean&green@hamilton.ca or call 905-546-CITY (2489).

Paul Vicari lives in Hamilton with his family and works as a web developer in Toronto.

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By John Neary (registered) | Posted April 04, 2012 at 20:45:10

Am I allowed to be a little bit cynical about the fact that this event is sponsored by Tim Hortons, purveyors of the unrecyclable disposable cups that can be seen in every gutter in downtown Hamilton?

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By DowntownInHamilton (registered) | Posted April 04, 2012 at 22:26:37 in reply to Comment 75718

No. You can't.

They can be put into green bins, as far as I am aware.

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By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted April 05, 2012 at 06:39:52 in reply to Comment 75720

It looks like you're correct. According to mygoldbox.ca:

Foods of all kinds go in your green bin, but that's not all! You can also put in popcorn and fast food bags, Tim Horton's and other waxed paper cups, dryer lint, paper towel, tissues, hair, nail clippings, wet newspaper, and greasy pizza boxes.

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By lakeside (registered) | Posted April 05, 2012 at 00:09:01

Yes, you can.

I've been told several times now, from the people who endeavour to educate us about what-goes-where in our somewhat elaborate solid-waste collection system, that the cups are lined with a material that is NOT recyclable. I'm told that putting Tim Hortons cups into the paper stream devalues the load, and if there's enough of them, that can cause the entire load to be sent to landfill rather than be recycled. The lids, I am told, are a type of plastic that can not be recycled, or at least is not now. So both are garbage.

Am I the only one who wonders why TH doesn't change this?

Anyway, you can take comfort in knowing that these cups are in fact garbage, not a missed recycling opportunity, the next time you pick one up off your lawn, as I do most days.

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By MyMy (anonymous) | Posted April 05, 2012 at 05:15:20

http://www.hamilton.ca/CityServices/Garbage-and-Recycling/What-goes-where/

Included in “Garbage and Recycling – What Goes in a Green Bin?” on the City's website is Takeout coffee cup.

Included in “Garbage and Recycling – What Goes in Blue Box Recycling?” are Coffee cup lids and Coffee cups (polystyrene).

The following is from the booklet titled “Be the ONE!” that was included with the 2011-2012 Yard waste pick up calendar. The booklet information is good for two years. This information is also on the City's site.

Page 10

“Paper coffee cups and waxed paper coffee cups go in your green bin, not in your blue box. They can be used to hold cooking grease or kitchen sink guck before you put these things in your green bin.”

Page 24

“Try the bend test for plastic lids
If you can bend a plastic lid in half with one hand (between your middle finger and thumb) put it in your containers blue box. If you can't bend a plastic lid in half with one hand put it in the garbage. For example, lids from coffee cups, cottage cheese tubs and margarine tubs go in your blue box. The lids from laundry detergent bottles, pop bottles and water bottles go in the garbage.”

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By seancb (registered) - website | Posted April 06, 2012 at 16:24:47

If there was a 5 cent deposit on tim's cups, the problem of inappropriate disposal would be solved.

But they don't want to deal with their own garbage, they'd rather make it someone else's problem...

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By DowntownInHamilton (registered) | Posted April 08, 2012 at 16:08:09 in reply to Comment 75751

That's flawed logic.

That's like saying "We should add a small 'enviro-fee' to each Toyota car they sell because they pollute more overall, since they sell more cars than anyone else".

You can't charge one company, but not another. If you start with Tim's, who deceides then who is charged next? McDonald's? Wendy's? Where does it stop? Do the mom and pop shops have to pay too then? What about Coca-Cola since there's a ton of their cans and bottles blowing around?

Comment edited by DowntownInHamilton on 2012-04-08 16:09:23

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By WRCU2 (registered) | Posted April 08, 2012 at 12:29:50

I already suggested a great way to recycle these cups but I don't think that was the intention of Dr. Neary when he spoke up. His cynicism is the result of the hypocrisy and political motivation behind corporate sponsors that feed off the guilt of ordinary citizen consumers when in fact, they are the monsters; Which gives Team Up to Clean Up a whole new perspective to ponder.

Comment edited by WRCU2 on 2012-04-08 12:41:53

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By brooklyn (anonymous) | Posted April 15, 2012 at 21:43:41

Sounds like we first need to find out definitively whether Tim Hortons cups are like other hot beverage paper cups that can go into the green bin.

Then, if they are, we need to start demanding 'green-bin' type disposals at all Tim Hortons locations. Or better yet, demand that we be like some of the Maritime Provinces and have 'green-bin' public recepticles beside all public garbage and recycling bins. Can't be that hard.

Would be nice if we could also get everyone to stop littering but I don't know what to do about that...

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By DowntownInHamilton (registered) | Posted April 17, 2012 at 08:32:06 in reply to Comment 75960

The Tim's cups are green-bin acceptable. Most Tim's I've been in recently have these blue bin things - they have 3 openings - 1 for plastic, 1 for glass, 1 for paper. I believe the idea is for users who have a paper cup but remain inside the restaurant can throw them out there, but I have no idea if this is what actually happens. I've also seen that they are permanently closing certain garbage receptacles inside, and covering them with a sticker explaining the recycling process.

I think the green bin within the store is a good idea. There's a lot of food waste generated in these places, moreso when there's an attached Wendy's - that ends up going into the trash when it could easily be diverted.

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By ShawnRussell (registered) - website | Posted April 25, 2013 at 08:53:35

It is great to see more green initiatives like this that contribute to helping the environment. It is understandable that during an unstable economy such as now, environmentally conscious initiatives naturally take a back seat. Still, it is more important now than ever that we try to alleviate the negative effects of environmental pollution. Cleaning up and reducing the utilisation of plastic is an easy but good place to start.

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