Recycling changes take effect Monday

By Vanessa Ybarra
March 31, 2017 - 6:00pm

KAMLOOPS — Beginning Monday new changes will kick in as to what we can include in curbside recycling in Kamloops.

Recycle B.C., formerly known as Multi-Material B.C, will be taking over the city's recycling services, saving $1 million in the process.

Prince George, the North Okanagan, Vancouver, and Quesnel are all using the same program.

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Milk jugs, cereal boxes and cans will still be accepted as part of the new Recycle B.C. program, but there are some items that will no longer be allowed in blue bins.

One of the main changes of the recycling program is glass bottles and jars, as well plastic bags, can no longer be picked up curbside.

Instead, they have to be dropped off at the Lorne Street Bottle Depot or General Grants North Shore or Sahali location.

The no glass rule may be frustrating for some, but the city says vital for Recycle B.C. operations.

"When glass breaks in the recycling mix, it breaks into very small pieces that you can't get out of the recycling mix so it reduces the value of that product," said Jen Fretz, Director of Public Works and Utilities for the City of Kamloops.

Public works staff are scouring the city gently reminding residents of the new rules.

"What we're  gonna do for the first month is have staff look into bins and see what's in there," said Fretz. "We'll put a tag to let people know what shouldn't be in there. The hope is it's a fairly small change and people will, as they have in Kamloops for many years, get used to the change.

At General Grants Bottle Depot in Sahali, they fill one large glass bin a week.

While the pile is likely to get higher once the new recycling rules come into effect, staff saying they're ready.

"We don't see a problem but we did rearrange our back area where we're doing the recycling just to make it more accessible and convenient for the customers," said Cameron Thomsen, Manager of General Grants Sahali.

One item General Grants won't be accepting is paint.

"The city put on its pamphlet that we take paint, but we in fact do not," said Thomsen.

While substantial changes are no doubt coming to curbside pick-up, the city says there is a silver lining.

"The good thing about having Recycle BC. is you can put things in your recycling box that you couldn't put before," added Fretz. "This includes things like empty aerosol cans, empty pet food bags and pizza boxes."

The changes go into effect Monday.

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