Did You Know?

Estimates vary with time, but on average, Canadians generate about 0.7 tonnes of waste per person per year. People in BC generate less than the Canadian average, second only to the rate in Nova Scotia, at just less than 0.6 tonnes per year.

Generally curbside solid waste from residential areas contains about 1/3 organic material (food scrap and yard waste) that can be diverted from landfill, and therefore GFL Delta Composting is capable of providing service that reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and conserves landfill capacity for a population of approximately 750,000 people in the Metro Vancouver area and BC Lower Mainland. ,

GFL Delta Composting is licensed to process up to 150,000 tonnes of approved organic material per year, making it one of the largest composting facilities in Canada. At least 50% of our compost produced at our facility is used for sod farming. Due to the process and emission control technologies in place, the GFL Delta Composting site is able to emit the equivalent emissions of a 15,000 tonne/year traditional windrow compositing facility. 

In 2020, by recycling organic waste instead of sending the waste to a landfill site, the GFL Delta Composting facility avoided more than 69,000 MTCO2e of emissions. That is like converting more than 15,000 gas power cars to zero emission vehicles. It also represents almost 45% of GFL’s 2020 emissions avoided from organics recycling. The GFL Delta Composting facility avoids more emissions per tonne of organic material recycled. This is due to the quantity of food diverted from landfills and the state of the art composting processed served by biofilters.



What are the specific services that GFL Delta Composting provides to the region?

Our GFL Delta Composting facility receives approved organic waste from our customers and processes it into nutrient-rich compost, and landscaping products such as planting mix and soil mix which contributes to the circular economy for organics. GFL uses our own products at our sod farm, West Coast Instant Lawns. Our customers of our products also include other farmers, commercial landscapers and private residential customers in the Lower Mainland.

Why do I always see people in GFL pickups driving around my neighbourhood?

In the interest of continuing to be a good member of the community, GFL personnel conduct daily (at a minimum) drive arounds through the community to help determine if there are any odours within the community that can be directly attributable to the GFL Delta Composting facility. Further, as soon as practical, and once wind direction toward surrounding communities has been verified, GFL personnel will conduct a community drive around following receipt of an odour complaint as part of the internal investigation.

Who does GFL Delta Composting service?

GFL Delta Composting services municipalities in the Lower Mainland of BC, as well as private customers in the region whereby we collect their organic waste to be processed at our facility.

What kind of organics does GFL Delta Composting process?

Our GFL Delta Composting facility processes lawn and garden, and food organic waste.

Where do these organics come from?

The organic waste our GFL Delta Composting facility processes all comes from our customers in the Lower Mainland BC region.

Can the community bring organics to GFL Delta Composting?

Yes. We offer free-of-charge drop off of yard waste to Delta residents. We ask that residents use the curbside programs for other approved organics such as food waste in order to maintain separation between our light vehicle yard waste drop-off, and our receiving area that is setup for heavy trucks.

What kinds of materials can the GFL Delta Composting facility accept?

The types of organic materials that can be accepted are the GFL Delta Composting facility are documented in our approvals with Metro Vancouver. GFL employees work to reject loads of acceptable materials before they are tipped in our receiving building, and pick unacceptable materials out of the receiving area for appropriate disposal. Acceptable and Unacceptable Material in our permits are provided below.

Acceptable Material

The Facility may accept for composting purposes the following types of Compostable Material which are considered Municipal Solid Waste:

  1. Food Waste
  2. Yard Waste
  3. Soiled Paper
  4. Packaged Organic Waste
  5. Waxed Corrugated Cardboard
  6. Clean wood waste that has not been treated with anti-sapstain or other wood preserving chemicals,
  7. Other materials specifically authorized in writing by the Solid Waste Manager and such authorization shall be deemed to form part of this Licence.

For Co-composting purposes, the Facility may accept the following types of Compostable Material which are not considered Municipal Solid Waste:

  1. Industrial organic waste, other than that specifically excluded in the Unacceptable Material Section below
  2. Agricultural organic water, other than that specifically excluded in the Unacceptable Material Section below
  3. Bulk Liquids
  4. Other materials specifically authorized in writing by the Solid Waste Manager.

The Facility shall not accept any materials while the Facility’s primary composting aeration system is non-functional.

Unacceptable Material

The Facility shall not accept:

  1. Any other waste not authorized in Acceptable Material section above of this Licence and specifically not:
  2. Hazardous waste
  3. Biosolids, wastewater treatment plant sludge, grit, and screenings.
  4. Dead animals, abattoir waste, hatchery waste, fish waste and chicken manure
  5. Wood other than clean wood waste that has not been treated with anti-sapstain or other wood preserving chemicals.
Aren’t organics banned from disposal in landfill in the Lower Mainland region of BC?

Yes, materials that are banned or restricted from disposal by Metro Vancouver are described in the GFL Delta Composting facility permits as shown below. Our receiving area is designed to take acceptable materials including yard waste, clean wood waste, and food waste, while our team works to separate other materials on this list for transfer to other appropriate facilities.

Material Bans

Disposal of the following materials are banned or restricted. They are either recyclable or hazardous.

  • Yard Waste
  • Newspapers
  • Corrugated Cardboard
  • Office Paper
  • Gypsum Waste
  • Lead Acid Batteries
  • Electronic Waste
  • Paints Solvents and Flammable Liquids
  • Clean Wood Waste
  • Medications/ Pharmaceuticals
  • Blue Box Recyclable Material
  • Beverage Containers (all except milk)
  • Tires
  • Oil Filters and Empty Oil Containers
  • Pesticides, Solvents and other Household Hazardous Waste
  • Mattresses
  • Food Waste

All reasonable efforts shall be made to recover recyclable material from all materials received at the Facility, for the purpose of recycling.

Additional Resources (Metro Vancouver)

What are the steps in the composting process?

Composting is the process of providing the right nutrient mix, pH, and moisture so that microbes can use oxygen and generate heat to turn organic waste into a stable soil-like or earthy product. Compost is useful for maintaining healthy soil for landscaping, gardening and agriculture.


GFL Delta Composting facility 2021 upgrades.

Below is series of images of our GFL Delta Composting facility that shows the upgrades in different ways. A timeline summary is also available that shows our application process, regulatory decision(s) and upgrades made.

Aerial view of GFL Delta Composting facility 2020 upgrades.

What are those piles?

Blending and Product Storage Area

Compost product ready to be loaded on to customer trucks and trailers may be visible in this area.

Overs Recovery Area

Larger pieces of composted material may be visible in these areas where they are stored prior to recovery through the process.

What makes the upgrades made to the GFL Delta Composting facility best-in-class?

Our GFL Delta Composting facility includes industry leading technology for material movement, aeration, and odour control.  This technology has a more compact footprint that allows the Main Process Building to be enclosed with a biofilter for to treat process odours.

Agitated Bay support compact footprint, support agitators, and provide excellent aeration using BacTee Flooring system

Electric powered agitators support aeration and move material through the composting process

40 new blowers provide control of oxygen and temperature at 105 aeration zones across 21 composting Bays

New Enclosed Biofilter with BacTee flooring system for air distribution, woodchip media for odour removal, and 15 m stack for dispersion is industry leading control technology.

Why did the GFL Delta Composting facility appeal Metro Vancouver’s Air Permit?

GFL has sought a permit that is clear, fair and allows us to focus our efforts and resources on effectively managing the GFL Delta Composting facility in an environmentally responsible manner today and in the future. We have also sought a longer-term operating license in line with the $50 million long-term investment made to our facility.

Environmental Management

What measures have been taken by GFL Delta Composting to manage odours?

I smell something, but not sure where it is coming from? Who do I contact? Can I submit odour concerns to GFL Delta Composting directly?

Yes, we encourage residential and industrial neighbours to contact us direct if you have inquiries about an odour you’re detecting and feel it is coming from our facility. We will initiate an investigation of the detected odour. Getting your feedback directly when you smell something makes our investigation more effective. Please contact us using this form.

Who regulates areas of concern from industry development in the lower mainland BC region?

The GFL Delta Composting facility’s operating approval is issued by the British Columbia Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy (BC MoE). The facility also operates under a Solid Waste Licence and an Air Quality Management Permit issued by Metro Vancouver, currently under review. Further, the facility works to fulfill obligations outlined by the Provincial Agricultural Land Commission (ALC), an independent administrative tribunal dedicated to preserving agricultural land and encouraging farming in British Columbia.

What are the operational reporting requirements of the GFL Delta Composting facility?

As part of our regulatory operating approval, we are required to submit the following operating and environmental reports each year to Metro Vancouver.

Operating Reporting

  • Annual Operating Period Report
  • Quarterly Operating Period Quantities Report
  • Annual Materials and Products Report
  • Annual Biofilter Monitoring Report
  • Annual Maintenance and Capital Activities Report

Environmental Reporting

  • Biofilter Quarterly Emissions Testing Plans and Reports
  • Odour Management:
    • Odour and Air Quality Complaint Management Plan
    • Annual Odour and Air Quality Complaint Management Performance Review
Does the GFL Delta Composting facility complete other monitoring?

Yes, other environmental monitoring activities our Delta Organics facility conducts include the following:

  • Quarterly water samples from the on-site construction water pond are collected. The associated analytical results are included in our annual reports
  • An annual report is provided to the City of Delta
  • An annual report is provided to the BC MOE

Community Engagement

How does GFL Delta do community engagement?

GFL Delta strives to be an active, valued and respected member of the communities they operate in. One of the ways we’re doing that within the Delta area is by forming the Public Advisory Committee. By regularly meeting with community members, we hear their ideas, perspectives and opinions firsthand. We also work to establish community partnerships, grants and outreach to stay connected with residents and the local economy. The Public Advisory Committee supports this work.

How are members of the Public Advisory Committee selected?

Public Advisory Committee (PAC) members are selected through a competitive and advertised process with three-year terms. Appointment terms will be offset to permit continuity in PAC consultation and deliberations. At least two members of the inaugural PAC will be re-appointed for two two-year appointments. New appointments will be made for three-year terms.

PAC Members will comprise representatives of local community groups, an Indigenous representative, municipalities, GFL Delta Organics and individuals who reside in the area.

Members will determine the size of the PAC. It will be sufficient to allow participation at meetings by all members, support informative discussion and ensure adequate numbers for decision-making at meetings.

How often does the Public Advisory Committee meet?

The Public Advisory Committee will meet approximately four times during the year, ideally during each quarter. Additional meetings will take place via the approval of GFL Management.

What is GFL Delta doing to ensure they hear from diverse perspectives and opinions?

We know our region is diverse, and we want the Public Advisory Committee (PAC) to represent that. That’s why our membership includes a variety of unique perspectives, including across age, gender, ethnicity and expertise. For example, we have committed to including the following voices:

  • At least one PAC member, 25 or younger, to ensure we include a youth perspective
  • Representation from the local Indigenous community
  • Those with experience in environmental and safety compliance
  • A member of the community with direct community involvement experience

The PAC can also appoint additional members based on a need for specific expertise, should a concern or issue require it.

And importantly, while we want to include as many voices as possible, we want to keep the PAC to an appropriate number to ensure everyone can contribute.

I want to make a submission to the PAC. How do I do that?

On our Engagement page, we have a submission form to accept comments, questions, or concerns for members of the Public Advisory Committee. Submissions are accepted on an ongoing basis.

I want to be considered for an appointment on the Public Advisory Committee. Where can I forward my information?

To submit your name for consideration to join the Public Advisory Committee, please email deltapac@gflenv.com. All submissions should include a brief overview explaining the value, expertise or insight you would provide to the Committee and a resume or CV.

Can I receive updates about the work of the Public Advisory Committee?

We will share updates on our website and engage directly with the community. Also, meeting minutes will be shared on our website after each quarterly meeting.