Reducing our waste is a responsibility

Threatening to throw recyclable items into our growing landfill is a ‘payback’ that hurts our community.

To the Editor,

Re: Encourage co-operation with recycling, Letters, Nov. 8.

I was disappointed to read one man’s annoyance with Multi Material B.C.’s changes with limitations on what materials are accepted to be recycled.

With Canada sitting as the second most waste-producing country in the world, barfing out so much waste that if every country lived this way we’d need an additional four Earth-like planets to sustain our waste and the pollution it causes, I think it’s time we all started being more responsible for our own waste.

High demands on our recycling centres is a direct consequence of our poor consumer choices. The products we purchase are usually over-packaged and take vast amounts of time, energy and millions of dollars to deal with, not to mention the pollution caused by the recycling process. I think, as a consumer and an inhabitant on this Earth, it is our individual responsibility to be held accountable for our own waste, making sounder choices so that our recycle centres are not overloaded with unnecessary material we didn’t need in the first place.

Threatening to throw recyclable items into our growing landfill is a ‘payback’ that hurts our community, our eco-system and therefor our survival on this planet.

Skye WintersNanaimo

 

To the Editor,

Re: Encourage co-operation with recycling, Letters, Nov. 8.

I would like to clarify a few points raised by the writer.

Multi-Material B.C. is a non-profit organization, created to manage residential packaging and printed paper recycling programs in B.C. to ensure this material is recycled, not just diverted from landfill. The program is funded by the producers of packaging and printed paper, so the cost of recycling service in Nanaimo is paid for by an incentive provided by Multi-Material B.C., not by taxpayers. Because the City of Nanaimo delivers the recycling program, Multi-Material B.C. does not directly communicate with residents by sending brochures or information.

When the program launched in 2014, more than 10 new materials were added as accepted items for recycling. For example, coffee cups, milk cartons, spiral wound cans, plant pots and aerosol containers are now accepted in curbside collection. The only item removed was plastic bags.

When materials not accepted at the curb in the Multi-Material B.C. program are included in curbside collection they can affect the recyclability of materials that are accepted in the program, meaning that less of the collected material is recycled properly. Plastic bags were removed because of challenges recycling this material when collected curbside. However, when plastic bags and film are collected through our depots, they can be responsibly recycled.

Allen Langdonmanaging directorMulti-Material B.C.