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Recycling Council of Ontario
215 Spadina Ave, , Suite 225, Toronto, Canada

Memberships : NA
Basic Member
Since Oct, 2015
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About Company

About RCO

Recycling Council of Ontario (RCO) is a not-for-profit membership-based organization involved in policy, education, and project work around the issues of consumption, waste generation, reduction and diversion, and recycling. Our activities include:

  • implementing pilot recycling programs to target specific waste materials,
  • supporting the development of legislation and regulation,
  • conducting leading-edge research projects,
  • promoting the benefits of waste diversion and recycling,
  • supporting waste diversion programs and initiatives, and
  • providing information and resources to the general public and other stakeholders.

Our project mandates adhere to the 3Rs hierarchy: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle - in that order. Where possible we identify challenges and offer solutions. And we facilitate open and fair dialogue between stakeholders. Indeed, as the only multi-stakeholder group in the province, we provide a collective and effective voice on waste issues and recycling opportunities, bringing all players around the table. 

We believe that each Ontarian can exercise the "power of one" to reduce his or her environmental impact. But through the collective efforts of us all, we have the potential to conserve resources, consume wisely and minimize waste right across Ontario.

Beliefs & Mission

The Recycling Council of Ontario believes that society must minimize its impact on the environment by eliminating waste. To that end, our mission is to inform and educate all members of society about the generation of waste, the avoidance of waste, the more efficient use of resources and the benefits and/or consequences of these activities.

Goals & Guiding Principles

RCO believes that policies and programs should be evaluated for their environmental and economic sustainability using the following guiding principles.

1. Full Cost Accounting

RCO believes that the cost of goods and services should be determined according to the principles of full cost accounting. Full cost accounting means that goods and services are priced to include their true environmental costs from all phases of production, transportation, distribution, use, reuse, recycling, composting and disposal.

2. Shared Responsibility

RCO believes that responsibility for minimizing environmental and economic impacts must be shared by all parties that benefit from and/or impact on the production, distribution, use, and/or disposal of products and packaging or delivery of services. In sharing responsibility, the parties should have the authority and ability to influence those policies and practices that affect them.

3. Regulatory and Legislative Initiatives

RCO believes that governments should intervene using regulatory and/or legislative mechanisms where voluntary initiatives are not in place or fail to adequately protect the environment.


4. Non-Regulatory Initiatives

RCO supports non-regulatory environmental protection and remediation initiatives implemented on a voluntary basis providing there are mechanisms to monitor performance and that there are consequences for non participants and/or failure to meet established performance standards.

5. Level Playing Field

RCO believes that government(s) should support environmental policies and practices that ensure equitable participation through the introduction of incentives, disincentives or if necessary, regulations.

6. Economic Instruments 

The RCO believes that financial incentives/economic instruments should be used to encourage the development and implementation of environmentally sound programs and practices. Moneys generated through these instruments should be used to support such programs and practices.

7. Harmonization

RCO believes that federal/provincial/municipal environmental policies and programs should be harmonized where possible and practical. Any harmonized approach should meet or exceed the highest environmental protection standards currently in use.

8. Accountability 

The RCO believes that participants in both voluntary and regulatory environmental programs and practices should be continually monitored and held accountable for meeting established goals, targets or standards. Monitoring data and analyses should be publicly available.

9. Communication and Education 

RCO believes that stakeholders should be adequately informed and educated as to their respective roles and responsibilities in environmental programs and the results and effectiveness of their participation in these programs.

10. Public Participation

RCO believes that all stakeholders should have the opportunity to participate in the development of environmental policies and the monitoring of environmental programs and practices. RCO believes that adequate resources should be made available to ensure such participation.

11. Operational Efficiency

RCO believes that environmental policies and practices should promote the highest levels of efficiency and effectiveness through the use of 'Best Available Technology' and bench-marking.

History

The Recycling Council of Ontario (RCO), established in Toronto, Ontario in 1978, was modeled after the Recycling Council of British Columbia. The RCO was created to help Ontario's struggling recycling operators cooperatively market the newspapers, glass, and metal cans, which they were collecting from community recycling depots and door-to-door drives. In the 1980s, RCO began to host conferences and seminars to discuss a wide range of recycling issues from technology and subsidies for recyclers, to government policies and public education. RCO had an active role in the development and introduction of a test Blue Box program in Kitchener, Ontario in 1981. At a United Nations dinner during the 1989 "Our World" Summit on the Environment in Toronto, the United Nations Environment Program presented an Environmental Leadership award to the RCO for its contribution and leadership of the Blue Box program.

To support the newly adopted 3Rs regulations in Ontario (1994), RCO provided information, guidance and resources to those in the Industrial, Commercial and Institutional (IC&I) sector who were obligated under the Regulation to reduce their waste. In the late 1990s, RCO was appointed by the Ontario Ministry of the Environment to lead the "Roles and Responsibilities" forum facilitating discussions between industry and municipalities. These discussions lead to the adoption of Ontario's only stewardship legislation, the Waste Diversion Act (WDA). This law provides the legislative backdrop for the Minister of the Environment to require brand owners to be responsible, physically or financially, for the 'end of life' management of their products and packaging. RCO is the only not-for-profit environmental organization directly involved in the development of stewardship programs.

Today, RCO continues to play a vital role in building awareness of the issues of waste and the opportunities to eliminate it through the 3Rs. Further, we continue to:

  • provide information and resources to the IC&I sector,
  • provide the public with information and resources through various programs,
  • recognize best practices through our Awards program,
  • improve Ontario's diversion rate through the development of innovative stewardship programs.

Programs

Whether spanning decades or introduced fairly recently, all RCO programs uphold our mission and mandate for a variety of audiences, and seek to communicate our message as widely as possible.

Explore our Programs:

3RCertified

3RCertified is an innovative program that provides credible, public recognition to businesses and institutions that have made a meaningful commitment toward achieving a variety of important environmental goals.

RCO Awards (formerly Ontario Waste Minimization Awards) 

Our annual program is the highlight of our Waste Reduction Week in Canada activities and where we honour achievements in environmental sustainability and waste reduction innovations.

Take Back the Light

Take Back the Light is the first full-service fluorescent lamp recycling program for businesses and institutions in Ontario. Join the movement to keep mercury-containing lamps out of Ontario landfills.

Waste-Free Lunch Challenge

The Waste-Free Lunch Challenge is an elementary school program designed to challenge students across Ontario to go waste-free for a whole week as part of Waste Reduction Week in Canada.

Waste Reduction Week in Canada

Taking place every year in the third week of October, Waste Reduction Week in Canada (WRW) informs people about the environmental, economic and social impacts of wasteful practices and engages them in reducing waste. Waste Reduction Week in Ontario focuses on the WRW campaigns specific to Ontario.

Company NameRecycling Council of Ontario
Business CategoryPlastic Recycling
Address215 Spadina Ave,
Suite 225
Toronto
Canada
PresidentNA
Year EstablishedNA
EmployeesNA
MembershipsNA
Hours of OperationNA
Company Services
  • Waste Reduction
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