RDOS announce upcoming changes to curbside collection

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RDOS CAO Bill Newell and Board Chair Dan Ashton display appropriate waste containers for garbage

RDOS CAO Bill Newell and Board Chair Dan Ashton display appropriate waste containers for garbage

Major changes to curbside garbage and recycling collection programs are coming in July.

The blue bag recycling program will allow residents to place all of their clean and dry recyclables in the same clear or clear blue bag. There will no longer be a need to sort recyclables into blue and yellow bags. Residents can continue to use their blue boxes if they like with no need for sorting. An unlimited amount of recycling will be collected from every home, every two weeks.

Residents in Oliver and Osoyoos, will see no changes to their blue bag recycling program but will be collecting recycling and yard waste on alternating weeks. The Town of Osoyoos has already started these alternating week collections and the Town of Oliver will start in July.

In Penticton, Oliver and Osoyoos, residents are asked to not place yard waste in clear plasticbags. Plastic bags are not compostable and must be removed from the process before the yard waste can be chipped. Instead residents can use compostable kraft paper yard waste bags or use clearly marked reusable containers. Reusable containers can be garbage cans with ‘yard waste’ clearly marked on them. Large stickers marked ‘yard waste’ are being sent to homes and residents can pick up extras from their local municipal office.

SFI Canada Facility Manager, Roy Aitken, recommends residents choose their reusable yard waste container carefully to allow for easy collection with little mess.

“When you purchase a yard waste container, look for no ridges on the inside,” explains Aitken.

“Yard waste gets stuck on the ridges making a mess and leaving yard waste inside your can.”

Changes on Collection Days in RDOS Rural Areas

Some rural RDOS areas will change weekly collection days starting in July.

In Naramata and Falconridge the collection day has moved from the current Tuesday to Monday. This move was made to allow residents, especially weekend visitors, to better comply with new bear attractant rules in the Naramata area.

Kaleden and Heritage Hills residents will switch from Monday collections to Wednesday collections. This change will allow for Kaleden and Heritage Hills residents to receive collections on the same day as other homes in Okanagan Falls and Skaha Estates.

All Electoral Area “B” residents in Cawston and Nighthawk Pass will see their collection day switch from Mondays to Fridays. This change allows the entire lower Similkameen valley to be collected on Fridays.

The Green Mountain Road and the Carmi areas will see their collections switch to Fridays.

Carmi residents have a special drop off service that is currently under review and they will be contacted directly on any proposed changes to their program.

No other areas in the RDOS are affected by changes to their regular collection day. New Curbside Calendars and other information will be sent out to home owners in June explaining all the changes. For all RDOS areas, the Towns of Oliver and Osoyoos and the Village of Keremeos blue bag recycling occurs the week of July 4 to 8 with yard waste collected July 11  to 15 on your day of collection.

Glass Collection Stopping

The final major change in July is the discontinuation of all glass collection throughout the RDOS.

Residents will no longer be able to recycle glass at their curbside but can bring container glass for free to all landfills and the T-2 Market in Oliver. As of June 15 the Osoyoos Bottle Depot and July 1st the J&C Bottle Depot in Penticton will accept container glass for free recycling.

Window, mirror, automotive or other non-container glass will not be accepted at these depots.

For Don Hamilton, RDOS Solid Waste Facilities Coordinator, the choice to discontinue container glass collection was a hard one but the right choice in terms of changes to the recycling market.

“I’ve been involved with local recycling programs for over 25 years and the RDOS has become a recognized leader in recycling,” explains Hamilton. “It is not easy to see a reduction in terms of the items that can be collected from your home.”

“That being said, the RDOS is one of the last places in BC still collecting glass at the curb.

Glass easily breaks causing splinters that can contaminate other recyclables and hurt workers.

There are no more glass recyclers in the interior of B.C. making it expensive to ship. As well we often find some people don’t clean their glass jars making it much more difficult to recycle.”

Hamilton states that returnable glass containers like beer bottles are fully recycled when brought to the bottle depot. These bottles are hand sorted to be free from contaminates. Beverage containers, which get returned for deposit, end up being made into wine bottles often used by local wineries.

Container glass collected at landfills and participating bottle depots will be crushed and reused locally as road base and landfill cover.

RDOS Chair and Penticton Mayor, Dan Ashton, realizes that any changes to a program like this can be temporarily confusing.

“We don’t make these changes lightly. As every homeowner knows, you get into a routine putting out your trash and recycling. But we believe these changes will help us reduce waste going to the landfill, make our programs more efficient and ultimately save money for taxpayers.”

For specific information on your Curbside Collection please contact your local government office or BFI Canada at 250-490-3888 or toll free 1-866-998-4888. The RDOS Solid Waste

Department can be reached at 250-490-4129, toll free 1-877-610-3737 ext. 4129.