Changes to recycling program discussed

New stewardship program comes into being in May of 2014

Regional district staff briefed directors about changes coming to collection of printed paper and packaging in the regional district curbside pickup programs at  the board meeting on January 10.

Producers and manufacturers of printed paper and packaging have set up a stewarship group called Multi Materials British Columbia (MMBC).This organization will be responsible for the organization, funding and regulation of most paper and packaging residential recycling programs in B.C. The not for profit agency has expectations of recovering up to 75 per cent of all recyclable paper products, up from the current recovery rated of 50 to 57 per cent.

The province has required producers to start paying for and managing collection of materials by May 19, 2014, which sets the stage for some very aggressive timelinesfor MMBC to set up processing and collection standards, in addition to assessing and offering a lump sum to each participating local B. C. government that currently operates a recycling system. Governments will have the choice of receiving the cash and continuing to operate the system, or hand over the service to MMBC by May, 2014.

Solid Waste Coordinator Cameron Baughen informed the board that the new service would not be offered  to commercial collection, or Princeton rural (Area “H”).

“The cost – the price the regional district will be paid for collection is still unknown,” Baughen informed the board, “there should be no decrease in the level of service offered, and the program fits in with what the RDOS is doing now.”

Baughen said they would “have to see” about pricing.

 

When the program begins in 2014, it will include an expanded list of materials collected, including single use cups, waxed paper milk cartons, soup tetra paks  and styrofoam. It is anticipated that lower costs will be incurred by local governments as a result of the change.