City of Ottawa to introduce a three-item garbage limit in 2024

Published on
June 14, 2023
Garbage and recycling

Next year, the City of Ottawa will lower its limit for curbside garbage collection to three items on collection day. No tag system will be introduced.    

A garbage item could be a garbage bag, a 140-litre container or a bulky item. Households can put several smaller bags in containers up to 140 litres. 

The landfill is filling up fast, and more than half of what currently goes to the landfill should go in the green, blue or black bin to be recycled.  

Around 85 per cent of households already set out three garbage items or fewer on garbage day.  

The new limit will encourage the remaining 15 per cent to think twice before throwing something away in the garbage if it should really be going in the green, blue or black bin.   

Staff will look into leveraging its existing Yellow Bag Program to permit residential properties receiving curbside collection flexibility to purchase and set out additional bags. 

Council also approved a third-party review of its waste-diversion data to ensure staff has the best possible information to support decisions for its Solid Waste Master Plan.

A graphic showing a house with garbage at the curb. Text above and beside it reads: Starting in 2024: Limit of 3 garbage containers or items on collection day.  Does not apply to buildings with more than 6 residential units.

Given the high cost of a new landfill, it’s better for everyone if we can extend the life of the Trail Road landfill by reducing the amount of waste we send there.  

To support a successful transition to a reduced garbage limit, the City will share more information with residents well before the reduced limit comes into effect.  

The limit would not apply to people living in buildings with more than six residential units.  

For more information on City programs and services, visit, call 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-2401) or 613-580-2400 to contact the City using Canada Video Relay Service. You can also connect with us through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  

A graphic showing that 58 per cent of our waste should really be recycled. Eight per cent belongs in the black bin; Five per cent belongs in the blue bin; 45 per cent belongs in the green bin; 42 per cent is properly placed in the garbage.