Let's Talk Trash: Fall projects await homeowners

Has the damp fall weather motivated you to do some inside projects? Maybe a little home renovation or basement cleanup that has been at the bottom of your list all summer?

If so, it can be tempting to take a trip to the “dump” (technically a transfer station in the case of qathet Regional District) to send unwanted items to that fantastical land we call “Away.”

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Of course we know there is no such place, and that there are a number of ways we can trim down our waste, and along with it, our tipping fee at the time of disposal.

When you’re tinkering away on a project, make the conscious choice to separate out items into giveaways, recyclables, compostables, hazardous waste and garbage. But just what qualifies as what these days?

Compared with much of North America, and even Canada, BC is fortunate to have some of the broadest categories of prepaid recycling programs around. Items like light bulbs, small electronics, plastic pens, used oil, natural wine cork, car tires, batteries, cell phones, small appliances, clothing and textiles, crinkly chip bag plastic (new!) and more can all be recycled at depots or a number of stores around town for free.

Beyond this, we can rethink the trashcan on larger items like used furniture that no longer seems to fit in with our space. Unique upcycling ideas can be found online to give a second life to seemingly outdated items. And, a trip to an upholsterer may inspire you to keep an antique set of chairs or couch that has a tear or faded sunspots.

If you are clear you need a new home for furniture, ask friends and family, post on social media, or offer to a local thrift store before paying big bucks to dispose of it.

And, when it comes to disposing bulky items such as mattresses and furniture, our region will be experiencing some changes as of October 1.

What does this mean to you? If you only have household garbage, or the above household bulky items, you can skip the scale house and head straight to MSW (Municipal Solid Waste) to be weighed in there. Any materials strictly from construction, renovation or demolition that are not hazardous can still be weighed in at the entrance and brought directly to the tipping floor for disposal. This shift is in keeping with a new solid waste bylaw (No. 532), which is coming into place for more clearly identifying what goes where.

Check out powellriverrd.bc.ca under the “Current News” section for more details.

Enjoy this cooler weather and check off some indoor projects on your to-do list.

Let’s Talk Trash is qathet Regional District’s waste-reduction education program.

Copyright © 2018 Powell River Peak

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