Common Questions

What coloured bag should I use for garbage?

Residents and businesses in the Municipality of Lunenburg, Mahone Bay and Bridgewater are required to use clear, colourless bags for garbage. This change has been made in an effort to increase recycling and composting. One (1) tinted or dark bag is allowed per household/ business each garbage collection.

Read the FAQ sheet. For more information about clear bags for garbage, call (902) 543-2991.


Do I have to rinse my blue bag recyclables? 

Yes, recyclables must be rinsed. Food contamination makes recyclables less marketable. Recyclables that are food-covered also attract pests such as vermin and wasps, which pose issues for the waste hauler. 


Have there been changes to bulky waste collection in the Town of Mahone Bay?

Yes, as of January 2018, one bulky item can be placed for pick up in the Town of Mahone Bay every Green Week (garbage and green cart) collection. Read the guidelines.

This does not apply to collection in the Municipality of Lunenburg or the Town of Bridgewater.


How can I find out when my waste collection day is? 

Curbside collection calendars are available on-line. They are mailed out every December. You may also call (902) 543-2991.


I just moved to a new home, how do I find out where to put my waste for collection? 

In the Town of Bridgewater or the Municipality of Lunenburg, call 1-855-530-3324. In the Town of Mahone Bay call (902) 521-8892. 


My waste was not collected, who do I call?

In the Town of Bridgewater or the Municipality of Lunenburg, call 1-855-530-3324. In the Town of Mahone Bay call (902) 521-8892.


How close should I place my waste by the road/street for collection? 

All waste (including garbage boxes) should be no further than 10 feet (3 metres) from the roadside. Waste should be roadside by 7:00 am on collection day in the Municipality and 8:00 am in Bridgewater and Mahone Bay. 

Pedestrians and vehicle traffic should not be blocked by waste. Please ensure waste is poisitioned in front of any snowbanks. Snow must be shovelled away from the front of garbage boxes.


How can I report illegal dumping or waste burning?

Illegal dumping and burning can be reported to the Outreach & Compliance Officer at (902) 543-2991. 


Which bags are best for lining my mini bin or green cart?

Paper is the best. Paper shreds easily and decomposes quickly. Plastic-like compostable bags get stuck in grinding equipment and do not break down. Remnants of these bags cause contamination which is hard to remove from the finished compost.

Line your bin or cart using: paper liners, paper leaf and yard waste bags, paper grocery bags, flyers, paper towel or layer food waste with leaves in your cart.

Also try straining then wrapping wet food in newspaper. Cereal boxes are great for wet scraps, meat and bones. Once these boxes are filled, toss them directly in the green cart.


I would like to bring waste to the LRCRC, what should I do before I load my vehicle or trailer with waste?

Household waste must be separated and dropped off at different areas on-site. 

Construction and demolition waste is accepted both sorted and mixed. Sorted materials (ie. wood, shingles) are accepted at a lower rate. Mixed C&D is separated by heavy equipment on-site, saving customers the effort of having to sort it themselves. Household waste and furniture cannot be accepted with C&D waste. Fees vary according to where the waste is delivered from. Read more about tipping fees.

Household waste such as organics, landfill and recyclables (blue bag, paper and cardboard) are also accepted at the site. Read more about tipping fees. Residential household hazardous waste is accepted from the Town of Bridgewater, Town of Mahone Bay and the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg. For more information call (902) 543-2991.

Where can I find Spring and Fall Clean Up information?

Please click here.

My dog food bag has a layer of plastic inside, where does this go?

Garbage. Doing a simple rip test will tell you if the bag contains a plastic liner. Just rip the bag down the side and look closely to see if there is a web of plastic where the rip ends. If there is, then this means that paper is lined with plastic, a combination which cannot be recycled.

Where do plastic shopping bags (grocery/ retail) go?

Remove receipts and put them in a blue bag with recyclables.


Where do chip bags go?

Potato chip bags, granola bar wrappers and candy wrappers go in garbage. When you buy in bulk, you produce less packaging waste. Individual packaging creates more waste.

Where does cat litter and other pet waste go?


What can I do with old toys?  

If they can't be given away or sold (yard sale,online) they go in the garbage. They cannot be recycled. 


What do I do with unwanted clothing? 

Donate your unwanted clothing. Donation bins are located throughout Lunenburg County. Read more. Give friends and family clothes or hold a clothing swap with others to exchnage clothes. Old clothes can also be cut up and used as rags. Clothing that cannot be re-used or donated, goes in the garbage. Clothing is not collected for recycling in the Town of Bridgewater, Town of Mahone Bay or the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg.  

Where do egg cartons go?

If the egg carton is cardboard and clean, it can be recycled with your paper; if there are eggshells or a broken egg inside, it can go in your compost.

If is Styrofoam, it goes in the garbage regardless of whether it is clean or dirty.

Where do I put cereal boxes, cracker boxes, tissue boxes and frozen food boxes?

These are made of paper. These items should be placed in a clear bag or plastic shopping bag with other paper recycling. If they are heavily soiled with food or used to contain organics, they should be placed in the green cart. 

You can also put wet foods and meat scraps in, then toss them in the green. This keeps your green cart cleaner and helps to reduce odour and pests.

Can I put my recyclable food jars and containers in the same bag as my paper?

No, these items are processed separately. Metal, plastic and glass food containers and clean plastic bags go in a blue bag. Paper and boxboard (crereal boxes) go in a clear bag or shopping bag. 

Find out what goes in your blue bag, read the What Goes In guide.


What do I do with stove ashes?

  • Cool the ashes for 3 weeks in a fireproof container, stir and check them before putting them in the green cart.
  • Store the ashes away from buildings to avoid the possibility of a house fire if the ashes ignite

They may also be scattered around the garden to improve garden soil or sprinkled on driveways to improve traction on ice.

Where do I take left over paint to be recycled?

You can return leftover liquid paint to your local ENVIRO-DEPOT™ at no charge. ENVIRO-DEPOTs™ will accept latex and oil-based paints including aerosols, as well as stains and varnishes.

Empty metal paint cans, or paint cans containing  dried-up paint can go out for metal clean-up or be brought to the Household Hazardous Waste Depot at the Lunenburg Regional Community Recycling Centre for free.

Where can I take my electronics to be recycled?

Electronics may be dropped off at the Lunenburg Regional Community Recycling Centre's at 908 Mullock Road in Whynott's Settlement free of charge. They are recycled as part of the Electronic Products Recycling Association stewardship prgram.

The New Germany Enviro Center at 124 Copeland Road in New Germany also accepts electronics free of charge. Call (902) 644-7551 for hours. 

Where do pizza boxes go?

Pizza boxes go in the green cart. They usually are covered in food, and are therefore too contaminated to place with clean cardboard.


Where do used razors go?

They go in the garbage. 


Where do plastic containers with a pump (shampoo, soap) go? 

Remove the pump, put it in the garbage. Rinse the container and put it in a blue bag with recyclables.


Where do plastic cereal/ cracker box liners go?

Empty any crumbs from the liner and put it in the blue bag with recyclables. 


Why do I have to pay deposit on beverage containers?

Consumers pay a $.10 deposit on each liquor or non-liquor beverage container purchased and collects a $.05 refund for each container returned to an ENVIRO-Depot™. The other $.05 is used in part to administer the waste systems in NS and pay the operators of the Enviro–Depot™. An annual amount (little over $.02 from that remaining nickel) goes back to Municipalities in the form of diversion credits to help offset the cost of collecting and processing recyclables and compost. Nova Scotia has one of the highest return rates for beverage containers in North America.

What do I do with my coffee cup?

Styrofoam cups are not recyclable—they go in the garbage. 

Paper cups, such as Tim Hortons and McDonald's beverage cups are not compostable and should be placed in the garbage. Paper cups were accepted in the organics stream until recently but do not break down, thereby causing compost contamination. Waxy paper cups do not break down either, they should be placed in the garbage.

Where do tissues or napkins go?

They go in your green cart. Harmful pathogens are destroyed during the composting process. The composting process is provincially-regulated.

Do I have to remove paper clips and staples to recycle paper?

No, paper clips and staples don't have to be removed. Windows in envelopes and pages covered with tape can also be recycled, these pieces do not have to be removed.

What do I do with my batteries?

Residents can drop off rechargeable, non-rechargeable and car batteries at the Household Hazardous Waste Depot (LRCRC) for free. Non-rechargeable batteries are accepted at the LRCRC Depot for recycling as well but they are not banned from landfill. For that reason, residents are not required to recycle them--they may also be placed in a garbage bag during regular waste collection. .

Where does Styrofoam go?

In the Municipality of Lunenburg, Town of Bridgewater and Town of Mahone Bay, Styrofoam goes in the garbage. This includes meat trays, drinking cups, packaging (ie. electronics).

Where do Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs (CFLs) or fluorescent tubes go?

Seal CFLs and other lightbulbs in a box and place with regular household waste. Please label box as 'glass or lightbulbs' to help prevent injuries. Do not place inside a garbage bag. Waste collectors could be harmed if they are unaware of lightbulbs or tubes which have been placed in a bag.  

CFLS and 4 or 8 foot flourescent light tubes are accepted at the Hazardous Waste Depot for free. They are not banned from landfill and can be placed curbside, however they can be recycled as part of the Efficiency NS Mercury Collection Program.

What do I do with syringes and other sharps?

Syringes, sharps, retractable needles and lancets for blood testing all go in sharps buckets which are given out by pharmacies and local Diabetes Supply Centres.

Once the sharps bucket is filled, it can be returned to a local pharmacy and they will dispose of it safely and for free. Syringes should never be placed in garbage bags or blue bags! Glass jars and plastic food containers are not acceptable containers for disposal. Waste collectors and LRCRC staff have been stuck by sharps as waste is collected and processed by hand. Workers are unsure whether they've been infected by a needle stick for a year as they are often unaware of where that needle originated from. This is a very serious matter!  

Click here to read more about the Safe Sharps program.

The Lunenburg Regional Community Recycling Centre does not accept sharps. 

If products such as bags, packaging or cutlery say biodegradable or oxy-biodegradable, does that mean I can put it in the green cart?

While these products may break down in other municipal composting systems, the Recycling Centre asks residents and businesses in Bridgewater, Mahone Bay and the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg stop using them.

Paper liners and other paper-based options are the best choices for lining green carts and mini bins. Green carts are designed to contain organics without a liner.

Paper take out food bags, plates, paper/lightly waxed paper food wrappers go in the green cart. Hot and cold drink cups (ie. Tim Hortons and McDonald's) should be placed in garbage. The liners and waxy coatings on these cups do not break down. 

How do I dispose of my Christmas tree?

Residents of the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg and the Towns of Bridgewater and Mahone Bay can click here for Christmas tree collection dates. Trees cannot be collected during other times of the year. Christmas tree branches can be used to cover your flower beds in the winter. 

Where does wrapping paper go?

If it cannot be reused, non-metallic wrapping paper can be recycled with regular paper. Ribbon and bows must be removed and placed in the garbage. place in a clear bag or shopping bag at the curb.  

How do I get a green cart for my organics (food scraps and wet or soiled paper)?

Please call the numbers listed for each area:

Municipality of the District of Lunenburg: 1-855-530-3324      
Town of Bridgewater: 902-541-4370        
Town of Mahone Bay: 902-624-8327  

My business/ apartment building needs information about proper waste sorting, what number can I call for assistance?

The Public Outreach department at the LRCRC can arrange free waste education sessions with businesses and management of multi-unit buildings for employees and tenants. Please call (902) 543-2913 to arrange a convenient time. Waste sorting signs and brochures are available. This service is provided by the Towns of Bridgewater and Mahone Bay and the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg. Waste sorting signs with pictures and labels as well as waste sorting brochures are provided free of charge.


What do i do with broken glass?

Broken glass should be placed in a sealed box or container and labelled 'broken glass'. Place the box beside your garbage bag so the waste collector can see it. 


What can I do with my empty motor oil or antifreeze jug?

Ensure they are completely empty, with the lids on and place them in your blue bag for recycling. Residents can drop off leftover oil or antifreeze at the Hazardous Waste Depot free of charge.  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Does the Community Recycling Centre sell compost?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Yes, compost is sold in easy to carry totes and also by the half cubic yard or cubic yard. Large volumes may be purchased. Your truck or trailer is loaded for you. Call (902) 543-2991 for more information. Compost is great for vegetable and flower gardening. It is also great for feeding your lawn. Pricing information.

For further questions, please call (902) 543-2991. 



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