District of Squamish joins Recycle BC residential recycling program

Squamish: The District of Squamish has become the latest municipality to join the Recycle BC residential packaging and paper recycling program as a collection partner. Under the new partnership, the current curbside collection program will continue to be operated by the District but the collected materials will be managed by Recycle BC. Squamish residents who are currently part of the curbside recycling program will not see any changes to their day-to-day recycling.

Recycle BC is a non-profit organization funded by businesses that produce and sell packaging and paper products in B.C. Recycle BC provides financial incentives to local governments, First Nations, businesses and non-profits in order to collect recyclable packaging and printed paper, that is then sorted and sold to end-markets to be made into new products. 157 communities across B.C. currently partner with Recycle BC.

“The District is pleased to get on board with Recycle BC and to benefit from a program that sees some of the costs of recycling transferred to the actual producers of the packaging,” says District of Squamish Mayor Patricia Heintzman. “The financial incentives will benefit our Solid Waste Utility which is currently funding a major capital project as we extend the lifespan of the landfill. Looking ahead, it’s expected that the incentives will support programs and projects that will help us reach the targets set out in the Zero Waste Strategy.”

Annual anticipated financial incentives received by the District from Recycle BC is estimated at $229,000. In addition, $41,600 will be saved through transferring the handling and brokering of commodities to Recycle BC.

“We are pleased to have the District of Squamish join the Recycle BC program,” says Recycle BC Managing Director Allen Langdon. “Recycle BC is unique in that it’s 100% financed by producers of packaging and paper products, allowing us to work directly with communities to off-set collection costs.”

The District has been working towards joining the program since Recycle BC first launched in 2014, through aligning the current curbside recycling program with the Recycle BC requirements. Carney’s Waste Systems will now operate as an approved Recycle BC contractor, and has been an important partner for the District through this transition.

Now more than ever, reducing contamination by putting the right items in the right places is extremely important as there are financial penalties to the District if the contamination rate is above three per cent.

“Knowing what goes where is the most important aspect of this community recycling program – just a few misplaced items can contaminate an entire load,” says District of Squamish Sustainability Coordinator Marie-Lou LeBlanc. “Our community is already quite good at this, but it does take effort to get it right and so we have a variety of resources to help residents stay on top of the sorting.”

For a comprehensive list of what goes where and to download a detailed recycling chart visit https://squamish.ca/waste-diversion. For a list of frequently asked questions visit https://squamish.ca/recycle-bc-faq. For more information about Recycle BC visit https://recyclebc.ca.