History and Co-Founders
Waste Watch Ottawa (WWO) is a volunteer-based organization which was founded by Duncan Bury, Bill Toms, Brian Tansey, and Meg Sears as a response to shared concerns about the environment and municipal waste management in Ottawa and specifically about the poor performance of the city’s waste diversion programs. The ill-considered, technically and financially flawed city-supported proposal by Plasco to build an incinerator in Ottawa was instrumental in bringing Waste Watch Ottawa’s attention to the city’s lack of focus and investment in the more environmentally appropriate and effective recycling and green bin organics programs.
Vision, core values, and mission
Waste Watch Ottawa is committed to improving The City of Ottawa’s waste management practices and contributing to a greening of the city by supporting the development of new and improved waste diversion programs and initiatives designed to minimize the amount of waste being disposed of and avoiding the greenhouse gas impacts associated with waste generation and waste disposal.
WWO develops and presents evidence based, and informed opinions on how to improve the design and effectiveness of solid waste diversion from disposal policies and programs including the management of organic wastes. It achieves its mandate by undertaking research, reviewing and re-thinking economic, policy and engineering approaches and trends, both nationally and internationally, in the six “R’s” of rethink/redesign, reduce, reuse, recycle/compost, material recovery and residuals management.
WWO also examines best waste diversion practices in other cities in Canada and elsewhere, and assesses and uses data and analysis carried out by organizations such as Ontario’s Resource Productivity and Recovery Authority (RPRA), the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment, the European Union and other agencies and organizations.
WWO continues to interact directly with city council, city councillors, and city staff and with organizations like Ecology Ottawa (https://www.ecologyottawa.ca/) and the Community Associations for Environmental Sustainability (CAFES) (https://www.cafesottawa.ca/) to help ensure that decisions are made with full awareness of the GHG impacts, waste diversion opportunities and of best practices.