March 28, 2019

Facts and figures (2018):

  • Toronto had about 9,400 litter/recycling street bins across the city and 10,000 litter/recycling bins in City of Toronto parks in 2018.
  • Cigarette butts and gum were the most prevalent small litter items in Toronto (less than 10 centimeters in length, width and/or height)
  • Overall, there was a slight increase in large litter (greater than 10 centimetres) in 2018 compared to 2016. However, the volume of litter has slowly but steadily decreased since 2002.
  • Paper towels, napkins and serviettes are the most common large litter item.
  • The City services the street litter bins based on need, in some cases twice a day.
  • The size of the street litter bin openings is designed to prevent people from putting bags of their home garbage into the public bins.
  • Sometimes, garbage and organic waste are disposed of in public recycling bins and receptacles, causing recyclables to be sent to landfill.
  • Residents are asked to report full or overflowing street bins to the City’s 311 call centre.

Clean Toronto Together

Clean Toronto Together is the City’s annual litter removal campaign that takes place in the spring. It includes City staff cleaning streets, parks and watercourses, and culminates in more than 1,000 community and corporate-led cleanups over three days in April.

In 2018, about 190,000 residents participated in 1,211 cleanups, including:

  • 457 community cleanups with 11,613 participants
  • 261 corporate cleanups with 7,199 of their employees
  • 493 school cleanups with 170,494 students and teachers

City staff deployed more than 300 pieces of equipment, including 60 litter vacuums, 37 sweepers, 13 front-end loaders, 18 d‎ump trucks, 73 pickup trucks, 20 sidewalk sweepers, two power washers, 92 Parks and Forestry vehicles and several Toronto Water trucks.

Solid Waste Management Services removed more than 726 tonnes of litter. The following items were also removed

  • 368 discarded tires
  • 1,844 posters
  • 632 abandoned bikes, and
  • 831 metal appliances.

More information about litter is available from Solid Waste Management Services at

More information about Clean Toronto Together is available at

Media contacts:
Solid Waste Management: Ashalea Stone, Strategic Communications, 416-392-8306,
Clean Toronto Together: Valerie Cassells, Strategic Communications, 416-660-1712,