Thunder Bay

Learn more about your recycling program.

Recycling Program Transition


Starting July 1, 2024, recycling will be even more convenient with a new automated cart system in Thunder Bay. 
These new split-body recycling carts will simplify sorting to ensure materials are recycled effectively.

Learn more about the new automated recycling cart.

Recycling program transition

Circular Materials will manage Thunder Bay’s recycling program as of July 1, 2024. This transition will not impact recycling collection frequency and accepted materials.

For information on recycling until July 1, please visit the City of Thunder Bay’s website.

Recycling resources

Learn more about recycling collection in Thunder Bay.

Get in touch

As of July 1, 2024, please contact GFL for any recycling collection inquiries. They can be contacted for:

  • Replacement recycling carts.
  • Missed collections.
  • Other recycling questions.

GFL

Introducing the new automated recycling cart

Start July 1, 2024, recycling will be even more convenient with a new automated recycling cart system in Thunder Bay.

These new split-body carts will simplify sorting to ensure materials are recycled effectively. There will be no change to the materials you can recycle or your collection day.

    Carts will be delivered to homes in Thunder Bay free of charge during May and June, 2024.  

    Carts can be used starting July 1, 2024. Do not use your cart before this date. Store your carts safely until then.

    The new split-body carts make it easy to sort your materials and ensure they are recycled effectively. Cardboard and paper go in the grey lid side, and containers go in the blue lid side.

    Blue lid:

    • Food and beverage cans
    • Plastic containers
    • Glass bottles and jars
    • Milk cartons and Tetra paks

    Grey lid:

    • Newspapers, flyers, magazine
    • Cardboard and boxboard (broken down and flattened)
    • Paper egg cartons
    • Toilet and Paper towel rolls
    • Clean used paper such as printed paper and mail

    If you have additional cardboard that doesn’t fit in your cart, place bundled cardboard beside your cart, no larger than 90cm c 60cm x 30cm broken down flat & tied with string or rope.

    When getting your recycling ready for collection day, remember to:

    • Place your cart out by 7 a.m. on your collection day and set your automated recycling cart so that the wheels are away from the curb (towards your home).
    • Place your carts on a flat surface clear of any snow and ice.
    • If your recyclables don’t fit, save them for your next collection day.
    • Place cart at least 3 feet in front of or beside fences or vehicles.
    • Place cart 3 feet from garbage.

    If a cart requires maintenance or a replacement, please contact GFL at 844-870-4351 or  thunderbayrecycling@gflenv.com.

      • Improved service and efficiency: Recycling carts are highly durable and easy to handle. Instead of lifting recycling bags to the curb, you can simply wheel your recycling bin to the curb making it even easier to recycle.
      • Simplified sorting: Split-body recycling carts simplify sorting recyclables by providing separate compartments for paper/cardboard and containers.
      • Enhanced safety: Automated collection systems with recycling carts create a safer working environment for collection staff and reduce the risk of injury and accidents.
      • Environmental advantages: Recycling carts, with lids fully closed, help minimize litter on streets and reduce odor and pest issues.
      • Cost savings: Reduced costs to residents associated with buying bags .

      Be recycle ready

      • Sort your recyclables before placing them in your recycling cart. Place paper/cardboard materials in your grey lid and containers in your blue lid.
      • Flatten and break down cardboard boxes to save space on recycling. If cardboard will not fit in your recycling cart, save it for your next collection day, or place it in bundles (3 ft x 2 ft x 1 ft) broken down flat & tied with string or rope, beside your recycling cart.
      • Clean materials before recycling. Make sure containers are free of food, liquid, and residue before placing them in the blue lid.
      • Place your recycling cart out by 7 a.m. on your collection day.
      • Point the front of the cart towards the street, and point the handles towards your house.
      • Place your recycling cart on a flat surface clear of any snow and ice. Place cart at least 1 metre in front of or beside fences or vehicles. 
      • Place your cart three feet from garbage. 
      • If your recyclables don’t fit, save them for your next collection day.

          Recycling depots

          Thunder Bay has three recycling depots. When visiting a depot, remember to:

          • Watch the signs at the depot – recycling carts are labelled for specific recycling streams.
          • Only leave recyclables at the depots.

          Operating hours:

          Monday – Friday: 8 am – 6:30 pm
          Saturday: 8 am – 4:30 pm
          Closed Sundays and all statutory holidays (including Easter Monday, Civic Holiday, National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, and Remembrance Day).

          • Located across from Westgate High School
          • Open Monday to Friday 8 am to 6:30 pm and Saturday 8 am to 4:30 pm
          • Closed Sundays and all statutory holidays
          • Located between McIntyre and Van Horne Streets
          • Open Monday to Friday 8 am to 6:30 pm and Saturday 8 am to 4:30 pm
          • Closed Sundays and all statutory holidays
          • Located at 5405 Mapleward Road (take the second right after entering the gate, before crossing the scales).
          • Open Monday to Friday 8 am to 6:30 pm and Saturday 8 am to 4:30 pm
          • Closed Sundays and statutory holidays