The new Board of Directors with the Regional District of North Okanagan will have to decide on potential changes to what can be dropped off at its recycling operations.
The board has heard from Waste Connections Canada about the problems it has since China stopped accepting recycled products.
Board Chair Bob Fleming says there’s been too much contamination in what would normally be recyclable.
“For instance, on recycling cardboard, pizza boxes with oil stains are not actually recyclable. And I’m pretty sure most people recycle pizza boxes. I have been.”
They end up contaminating other products which then all end being tossed in the landfill.
He says educating the public on what’s happening is one thing, but a new approach may need to be taken.
“Emphasizing the recycling part but there’s two other elements which is the re-use, you know, reduce, re-use and recycle. And I think a little more emphasis on the reduce and re-use might be appropriate.”
An example is not throwing away a plastic bottle after just one use or use an alternative.
Fleming also says other ways may have to be found at separating products.
“I think that’s going to get a strong look and I think it’ll all probably end up being a priority for the new board definitely that, you know, obviously it’s not sustainable to presumably recycle things and
really just end up putting them in the dump. You’re just paying twice do do something.”
China has stopped accepting foreign recycling.
Sixty-five per cent of commingled material is now considered waste and being diverted to landfills across Canada and the United States.