Regional Districts uniting to urge province to expand recycling program - InfoNews

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Regional Districts uniting to urge province to expand recycling program

Cardboard and paper make up a large portion of materials that produce methane gas in landfills. The Thompson Nicola Regional District has been contacting regional districts in a bid to get the province to include industrial, commercial and institutional recycling added to the provincial recycling regulation.
August 17, 2019 - 2:30 PM

PENTICTON - Regional districts in the interior are getting together to lobby the province to add industrial, commercial and institutional recycling to the province’s recycling program.

The move is meant to reduce huge waste streams of recyclable materials from business and industry from going into landfills. It would also help attract investment in locally-based recycling ventures by increasing the amount of product available.

Directors on the board of the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen discussed a letter sent to them by the Thompson Nicola Regional District at yesterday’s regular board meeting, requesting they come together in a unified front to the province to add printed paper and packaging from the industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) sector to the province’s recycling regulation.

Presently, only residential printed paper and packaging is required under the regulation.

Okanagan Similkameen solid waste coordinator Cameron Baughen told directors the present world market for recycling was in disarray, with price for recyclables falling after China recently raised its standards for contamination in recyclables sent to that nation.

He called the ICI sector “huge,” including schools, and small business to multi-national corporations.

Adding ICI recycling to the province’s program would create a framework for processing recycling materials locally, in addition to reducing the amount of recyclables going to the landfill.

Baughen suggested to the board the letter from Thompson Nicola Regional District was an attempt to engage the province and start discussion, something the board should also work towards.

“It makes sense to engage the ICI sector on recycling and how best we can move forward,” Baughen said.

Baughen said Thompson-Nicola Regional District's letter had been sent to other regional districts as well, some of whom had already submitted individual letters about coming together in a unified response to the minister.

The board agreed to endorse the letter in addition to sending supporting correspondence of their own to the province.

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