Mission is hoping to reach the 80 per cent diversion rate by 2020. / File Photo

More waste still needs to be diverted from Mission landfill

Diversion rate currently at 66 per cent, but 80 per cent by 2020 is the goal

Mission is on track to meet its waste reduction targets for the year, but more work is needed in order to meet the loftier goals in the future.

A report presented to Mission council on Monday afternoon shows that Mission’s 2017 curbside diversion rate was 66 per cent – up three per cent from last year – and one per cent higher than the 65 per cent the district was required to achieve by 2018.

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The waste reduction targets are set out by the Fraser Valley Regional District’s Solid Waste Management Plan (SWMP).

Curbside garbage collection frequency in Mission was reduced from weekly to bi-weekly in April of 2016. The switch was intended to promote better sorting of household wastes, and, according to the staff report, resulted in overall more compost collected at the curb than garbage.

The amount of curbside recyclables also surpassed previous years and an overall 10 per cent increase in curbside diversion to 63 per cent was achieved in 2016.

The district is now working towards meeting the 2020 diversion goal of 80 per cent. The SWMP’s overall zero-waste target is 90 per cent diversion by all waste-producing sectors by 2025.

To reach those goals, the reports says additional waste reduction and diversion initiatives are required. However, what those initiatives will be are still undecided.

One area in need of improvement is the Mission Landfill itself.

The diversion rate at the Mission Landfill rose from 16 per cent in 2016 to 18 per cent in 2017. The reports says this slight increase may be attributable to the addition of mattress recycling, and extra inspection staff at the landfill.

Mission Mayor Pan Alexis asked staff how the district is going to reach that 80 per cent diversion goal in the next two years.

The report makes some suggestions, but nothing has been approved at this time.

One suggestion in the report was to possibly reinstate “salvage options for reusable materials”, which could be considered on a trial basis.

The FVRD is in the process of assessing the feasibility of a regional mixed-waste material recovery facility. District staff is participating in the FVRD’s feasibility assessment work and ensuring local municipal considerations are addressed.

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