The City of Mission introduced a new education campaign this month aimed at decreasing contamination in curbside recycling by 25 per cent. The planned reduction serves to meet Recycle BC’s requirements and avoid financial penalties.
The campaign seeks to educate Mission residents about the recycling process through various means, such as informative videos, social media and website content, and on-site inspections of recycling bins. Currently, the city’s curbside and multi-family recycling program has a contamination rate of 9.71 per cent.
“Caring for our environment is a priority for us here in Mission, and that’s why we have set ambitious goals for diverting waste away from our landfills,” said Mayor Paul Horn in a news release. “It only takes a moment to ensure that we are not contaminating our recyclables, but it has a major impact on keeping Mission green.”
Through regular audits, Recycle BC identified the top five recycling contaminants as garbage and food waste, non-packaging plastic products (e.g. storage bins, laundry hampers), non-packaging multi-material products (e.g. binders, toys, car seats), hard and soft cover books, and textiles.
According to the news release, failure to reduce contamination by 25 per cent by October 2023 could result in less funding. It could decrease the financial incentive Mission receives from Recycle BC for collecting recycling and could result in a service level failure credit.
From May 2021 to August 2022, approximately 207,211 kg of material that was not accepted in the recycling program was found in the bins during Recycle BC audits. The city says this contamination has both operational and financial implications for the Recycle BC program, as it decreases the value of recyclables and hinders the ability to effectively recycle material.
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