Garbage Collection Frequency

Garbage is collected every two weeks, alternating weeks with recycling collection.

Acceptable Waste

Accepted Waste

Restricted Waste 

Waste not accepted for garbage collection include:

  • Oversize items exceeding two feet in any dimension
  • Highly flammable materials, hazardous wastes, containers of liquids such as cooking oil or motor oil
  • Products such as batteries, paint, pesticides, and electronic equipment collected at depots
  • Grass clippings, yard and garden waste
  • Food waste (place in the food waste cart)
  • Construction or renovation waste

Unsure of where an item should go? Use the What Goes Where look up tool to search hundreds of items.

Manual Curbside Collection (until September 30, 2020)

Garbage Limits

Basic service provides for one container of garbage collected once every two weeks. The volume of garbage in the container may not exceed 100 litres or 22 gallons in volume. For the safety of collection crew, weight of garbage per container is limited to 23 kilograms or 50 pounds.

The one-can garbage limit or basic service makes individuals responsible for the cost of the garbage they generate, and encourages waste reduction and participation in the green bin food waste collection and curbside recycling program. This has contributed to our success in diverting waste from the landfill. By participating in the green bin and curbside recycling program the vast majority of our customers can easily accommodate the one-can limit.

attentionWaste placed in the new collection carts before October 1st will not be picked up.

Excess Waste - Extra Garbage Tags

Tags for extra containers of garbage may be purchased for $3 each. A maximum of two additional containers can be put out on your scheduled collection day, provided a garbage tag is attached to each additional container.

In effort to safeguard staff and RDN residents under the current COVID-19 self-isolation protocols, the RDN is providing an alternate method of payment for the extra bag tags through the RDN online portal (does not apply to City of Nanaimo residents).

Effective immediately (for the duration of the COVID-19 outbreak), residents can submit a request through the online portal for extra garbage capacity at a cost of $3 per container, which will be billed on your annual utility bill. Your address will be added to the driver's route list on your next scheduled collection day.

If you choose to obtain physical bag tags, extra bag tags are being sold at the following locations:

Facility Location
OPEN - Georgia Park Store Bowser
OPEN - Meadowood Store North Qualicum
OPEN - Qualicum Foods Qualicum
CLOSED - Ravensong Aquatic Centre Qualicum
OPEN - Town of Qualicum Beach municipal office Qualicum
OPEN - Quality Foods Parksville
OPEN - Church Rd Transfer Station Parksville
CLOSED - City of Parksville municipal office Parksville
CLOSED - Oceanside Place arena Parksville
CLOSED - Waste Connections of Canada Parksville
OPEN - Quality Foods Nanoose Bay
CLOSED - District of Lantzville Lantzville
CLOSED - Regional District of Nanaimo administration office Nanaimo
OPEN - Jingle Pot Store Nanaimo
OPEN - Country Grocer (Chase River) Nanaimo
OPEN - Millway Market Cedar
OPEN - Cedar General Store Cedar
OPEN - Regional Landfill Cedar
OPEN - 49th Parallel Grocer Cedar
OPEN - Village Food Market Gabriola Island

Automated Curbside Collection (beginning October 1, 2020)

How to Use Your Garbage Cart (grey lid)

This short video illustrates how the garbage carts are to be used.

calendar Collection Schedule

In October 2020, the RDN will be transitioning from the current manual curbside collection service to the new automated curbside collection service - a cleaner, safer and smarter way to collect waste. Simply roll your carts to the curb on your scheduled collection day. The new collections truck will empty the carts and return them back to the curb using a mechanical arm operated by the crew from inside the cab of the truck.

Starting October 1st, 2020, RDN residents must start using their assigned automated collection carts for curbside collection.

attentionWaste placed in the new collection carts before October 1st will not be picked up.

calendar Collection will remain the same as the 2020/2021 collection schedule. Click here for check your schedule.

  • Food waste is collected weekly in your food waste cart;
  • Garbage is collected every two weeks in your garbage cart, alternating weeks with your recycling; and
  • Recycling is collected every two weeks in your recycling cart, alternating weeks with your garbage. 

By 8 AM on your scheduled collection day:

  • Roll your carts to the street with the wheels against the curb if there is one, or just off the road, on the shoulder or at the end of your driveway.
  • Face your carts with the arrows on the cart lid must point to the street. The cart lids must be completely closed and the food waste cart lid in the locked position; overflowing carts will not be collected as material will spill onto the street as it is being emptied.
  • Space your carts at least 1 m (3 ft) of clearance between the carts and any obstacles (parked cars, poles, fire hydrants, etc.) and 3 m (10 ft) of clearance above.
  • Remove your carts once the collection truck has emptied the carts, return your carts to a secure location on your property within the same day. If your carts are not collected by 6 PM, report a missed collection via the Online Portal (link will not be active until September 15th).