Municipal solid waste management for Vancouver is regulated by both the city of Vancouver and the regional district, Metro Vancouver. As mandated by the provincial government, through the BC Environmental Management Act, Metro Vancouver is responsible for providing the region with solid waste management plan. The current plan is called the Integrated Solid Waste and Resource Management Plan (ISWRMP) and was approved in 2010. One of the goals outlined in the plan is to increase the regional diversion rate, which includes both recyclables and compostable, from an average of 55% to at least 70% by 2015. A key strategy in achieving this target is increasing the amount of organic waste diverted from landfill disposal. To achieve this strategy, Metro Vancouver and the City of Vancouver are working together to develop and implement organic waste diversion programs for single-family, multi-family, institutional, commercial and industrial (ICI) sectors. In addition, the plan establishes that a landfill ban on the disposal of compostable organic material from all sectors be implemented in 2015 (MV, 2010, as cited by Toews, 2013).
The city of Vancouver, through its Greenest City 2020 Action Plan (GCAP), also sets goals and strategies regarding the management of waste. The GCAP, adopted in principle by City Council in 2011, sets out a strategy for making Vancouver the greenest city in the world. One of the goals in the plan is to reduce the disposal of solid waste by 50% from 2008 levels by 2020. A key action for achieving the city’s goal is to improve the diversion of organic waste from all secotors (COV; As cited by Toews 2013). To achieve this goal, the city has begun an organic waste diversion program. The program has focused on Single-Family households to date and improving organic waste diversion from Multi-Family households is considered a priority for 2013. At this time, the city does not have any policies or programs in place regarding the provision of organic waste collection services for Mult-Family residences.