Skip to content

Styrofoam recycling available for now

Trash team suggests waste can be decreased this holiday season

Holiday season is here. Gifts are being purchased and wrapped, boxes are being disposed of, and the old is being replaced by the new. The holiday season is a merry one but it also creates an astounding increase in regional waste.

Augusta Recyclers Inc. reports this is the busiest time of year at the recycling depot and the Let’s Talk Trash team, of Coco Hess and Abby McLennan of BHC Consulting, is pleased to hear that the community is taking time to recycle its surplus holiday waste.

“Remember, the metallic or foil gift-wrapping is not recyclable and should be avoided,” said Hess. She suggests people be creative this year and cut down on purchasing costs and recycling by using alternative wrapping paper options such as cloth bags, a scarf or fabric wrapped furoshiki style, a Japanese gift-wrapping method. She added that fancying up a paper shopping bag to offer a homemade touch is being lost in modern day tradition. Bags and salvaged wrap can be saved for use next year.

To date, Styrofoam has not been collected in Powell River as a recyclable product and is a contributor to the volume of trash that is exported to Washington State. “This year, in cooperation with Augusta Recyclers and Gibsons Recycling Depot, Powell River Regional District is sponsoring a pilot project for Styrofoam collection from December 15 to January 15, 2012,” Hess said.

Gibsons Recycling has been recycling Styrofoam for the past two years with a densifying machine utilizing high volume extrusion technology. This year for one month, the Let’s Talk Trash team will coordinate the collection of expanded polystyrene (Styrofoam) to be transported to Gibsons Resource Recovery centre and recycled into Styrofoam planter boxes. “These planters will be featured throughout the community as an up-cycled product of recycling your Styrofoam,” she said. In order for this pilot project to be successful, Hess asked that guidelines be followed:

Styrofoam must be expanded polystyrene (EPE). This includes packaging from electronics and shipping boxes, as well as peanut shells.

Meat packaging, food containers and egg boxes are allowed only if they are clean and dry.

All Styrofoam must be clean and dry and placed in a clear plastic bag.

Bagged Styrofoam can be deposited in the appropriate cages at Augusta Recyclers during manned hours only.

Let’s Talk Trash team will collect Styrofoam from Augusta Recyclers for this pilot project on the following days from 10 am to 2 pm: Saturday, December 17; Wednesday, December 21; Wednesday, December 28; Wednesday, January 4; Saturday, January 7; Wednesday, January 11; and Saturday, January 14.

“We appreciate your contribution to this pilot project and look forward to reporting the results in the new year,” said Hess. For more information on Gibsons Recycling and its resource recovery ideas, interested readers can visit online.

Let’s Talk Trash team has produced the 2012 Waste Wise Guide Annual Calendar, a handy resource for all households and businesses in the district. The calendar will be circulated in ad mail during the last week of December. It contains helpful waste reduction tips, how to recycle hazardous household waste, city garbage and collection schedules and local businesses making a difference by offering waste-wise choices.