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Recycle BC FAQs

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Below you will find answers to questions you may have regarding Recycle BC (formerly known as Multi-Material BC) and Mission’s entry into the provincial program.

These changes are effective April 3, 2017.

Printable version of Recycle BC FAQs

General Questions

 

How does joining Recycle BC change the recycling program for residents?

There are four main changes to the District’s recycling program starting April 3, 2017:

  1. Glass jars and bottles will be collected bi-weekly in a separate container (the “Black Box” for curbside collection and a black cart for on-site/multi-family collection). Glass jars and bottles will no longer be allowed in blue bags or multi-family recycling carts. Beverage containers with a refundable deposit (e.g., wine, beer, juice, pop and water bottles) should be returned for refund or given to charities.
  2. Film plastic, such as shopping bags, will no longer be allowed in blue bags or multi-family recycling carts and will have to be dropped off by residents at drop-off depots or at retailers with plastic bag take-back recycling programs.
  3. Additional products will be accepted in blue bags, multi-family recycling carts and at drop-off depots. These include most retail consumer packaging, household aerosol cans, frozen juice containers and plastic plant pots in the curbside collection system and Styrofoam™ at drop-off depots.
  4. Starting in 2018, residents will pay reduced solid waste utility fees for recycling collection on their annual property tax. The District will start receiving payments from Recycle BC for collection and processing services starting April 3, 2017. The resulting 2017 net budget savings will be used to partially offset program setup and transition costs in 2017 and 2018.
Why did the District enter into the Recycle BC program?

The District joined the Recycle BC program so that recycling collection and processing would be funded by industry instead of residential solid waste utility fees. The financial benefit to the District’s taxpayers is estimated at approximately $280,000 per year. This savings will be used to reduce the solid waste utility fees paid by residents on their annual property tax starting in 2018.

The Recycle BC program is also expected to result in more material being recycled overall, helping the District to achieve its diversion goals. In addition, by making producers and retailers responsible for the cost of recycling collection and processing, it is anticipated that they will be motivated to reduce the cost of the program by minimizing the amount of packaging required for their products.

What is Recycle BC?

Recycle BC (formerly known as Multi-Material BC) is a non-profit agency formed in 2012 by industry and retailers in response to a requirement by the BC provincial government that producers and retailers of packaging and printed paper (PPP) be responsible for the cost of collecting and recycling PPP in BC. In 2012, Recycle BC submitted a stewardship plan to the Province as required by the provincial Recycling Regulation. The stewardship plan provided how Recycle BC would meet the PPP stewardship requirement under the Recycling Regulation. In 2013, the Province approved the Recycle BC stewardship plan, which authorized Recycle BC to start providing PPP recycling collection at industry’s expense and thereby reduce the cost of recycling collection for municipalities. Recycle BC began providing recycling collection to selected municipalities in 2014.

Which other municipalities have joined the Recycle BC program?

Over 75 municipalities in BC have joined this program since 2014, including Vancouver, Surrey, Burnaby, Richmond, Coquitlam, Maple Ridge and Langley City. Abbotsford, Chilliwack and Kamloops will also join in early 2017.

Single Family and Multi-Family Curbside (Blue Bag) Collection

 

Will there be changes to the list of materials that are collected?

Yes. Glass and film plastic (grocery bags and bread bags) will no longer be accepted in the curbside blue bags; however, glass will be collected in a separate container every second week. Film plastic can be dropped off at recycling depots. New materials that will be collected in blue bags include:

  • most types of plastic retail packaging, except film and Styrofoam™, which can be dropped off at a depot for recycling;
  • empty household aerosol cans (e.g., hairspray and air fresheners, but no paint or oil related products);
  • frozen juice containers and ice cream boxes;
  • all gable-top cartons (e.g. wax paper milk cartons) and all aseptic boxes (e.g. soup boxes);
  • paper coffee cups and plastic lids;
  • plastic plant pots and trays;
  • gift wrap and egg cartons;
  • multi-layered pet food bags with plastic liners (but no metal foil liners).

Further information is available at: www.recyclebc.ca

Why won’t glass be accepted in the blue bag with the other recycling?

Glass can break during collection and is then difficult to sort from other recyclables, resulting in other materials, such as paper, not being accepted by recycling markets. Therefore the District will collect glass in a separate collection every two weeks. The District will deliver a special bin (the “Black Box”) for glass collection to each household receiving collection. The Black Box will be distributed to each curbside collection household by the end of March. Beverage containers with a refundable deposit (e.g., wine, beer, juice, pop and water bottles) should be returned for refund, or given to charities.

Why won’t film plastics be accepted in curbside collection?

Film plastics, such as shopping bags and bread bags, can get wrapped up with other recyclables during collection and are then difficult to separate. Plastic bags collected with other materials also get caught up in the processing equipment. Both of these issues can make film plastics and other recyclables less acceptable to recycling processors and markets.

If I can’t place glass and film plastic in my blue bag, what should I do with them?

Glass will be collected every two weeks in a separate container (the “Black Box”) that will be provided by the District. Beverage containers with a refundable deposit (e.g., wine, beer, juice, pop and water bottles) should be returned for refund or given to charities.

Film plastic retail packaging, such as grocery bags and bread bags, can be taken to the Mission Recycling Depot, Mission Landfill Recycling Drop-off, or the Mission Bottle Depot. Some retailers also take back film plastic for recycling, particularly grocery bags. Please note that “re-packaging” film, such as zipper lock plastic bags and saran wrap, are not part of the Recycle BC program, however zipper lock plastic bags can be taken separately to the Mission Recycling Depot on Mershon Street for recycling. Saran wrap and sandwich wrap should be placed into the garbage stream.

Why were glass and film plastic collected previously in blue bags, while other materials were not collected but will now be?

The Recycle BC program is a Province-wide program and needs to be consistent across the Province to ensure maximum collection. The larger scale of the program requires certainty of markets and therefore must address market concerns with glass and film plastic, while at the same time, providing economies of scale for accepting additional materials.

Multi-Family Communal Cart On-Site Collection

 

Will there be changes to the material that is collected?

Yes. Glass and film plastic (grocery bags and bread bags) will no longer be accepted in the communal mixed recycling carts; however, the District will provide new communal “glass only” containers (black carts) in addition to the current mixed recycling carts (blue carts). Glass jars and bottles can be placed into these “glass only” black carts. Beverage containers with a refundable deposit (e.g., wine, beer, juice, pop and water bottles) should be returned for refund, or given to charities.

Plastic film can be dropped off at one of Mission’s three recycling depots. In addition, many retailers have bins for recycling of plastic film (particularly grocery bags). New materials that will be accepted in the communal mixed recycling carts include:

  • most types of plastic retail packaging, except film and Styrofoam™, which can be dropped off at a depot for recycling;
  • empty household aerosol cans (e.g., hairspray and air fresheners, but no paint or oil related products);
  • frozen juice containers and ice cream boxes;
  • all gable-top cartons (e.g. wax paper milk cartons) and all aseptic boxes (e.g. soup boxes);
  • paper coffee cups and plastic lids;
  • plastic plant pots and trays;
  • gift wrap and egg cartons;
  • multi-layered pet food bags with plastic liners (but no metal foil liners).
Why won’t glass be accepted in mixed recycling?

Glass can break during collection and is then difficult to sort from other recyclables, which can result in other materials, such as paper and plastic, not being accepted by recycling markets. Rather than glass jars and bottles being placed into the blue mixed recycling carts for collection, the District will provide new communal “glass only” black carts in which residents can place glass jars and bottles for collection by the District. Black carts for glass will be distributed to multi-family complexes by the end of April. Beverage containers with a refundable deposit (e.g., wine, beer, juice, pop and water bottles) should be returned for refund or given to charities.

Why won’t film plastics be accepted in mixed recycling?

Film plastics, such as shopping bags and bread bags, can get wrapped up with other recyclables during collection and are then difficult to separate. Plastic bags collected with other materials also get caught up in the processing equipment. Both of these issues can make film plastics and other recyclables less acceptable to recycling markets.

If I can’t place film plastic in my mixed recycling cart, what should I do with it?

Film plastic retail packaging, such as grocery bags and bread bags, can be taken to the Mission Recycling Depot, Mission Landfill Recycling Drop-off, or the Mission Bottle Depot. Some retailers also take back film plastic for recycling, particularly grocery bags. Please note that “re-packaging” film, such as zipper lock plastic bags and saran wrap, are not part of the MMBC program, however zipper lock plastic bags but can be separately taken to the Mission Recycling Depot on Mershon Street for recycling. Saran wrap and sandwich wrap should be placed into the garbage stream.

New Materials Accepted in Collection

 

What new material will be accepted in blue bag curbside collection or multi-family on-site collection?

The new MMBC single-family blue bag and multi-family recycling on-site cart collection will include:

  • most types of plastic retail packaging, except film, Styrofoam™ and some mixed material packaging. Plastic film and Styrofoam can be dropped off at a depot for recycling;
  • empty household aerosol cans (e.g., hairspray and air fresheners, but no paint or oil related products);
  • frozen juice containers and ice cream boxes;
  • all gable-top cartons (e.g., wax paper milk cartons) and all aseptic boxes (e.g. soup boxes);
  • paper coffee cups and plastic lids;
  • plastic plant pots and trays;
  • gift wrap and egg cartons;
  • multi-layered pet food bags with plastic liners (but no metal foil liners).

All materials must be clean and dry.

What new material will be accepted at drop-off depots?

 

What new material will be accepted at the depots?

Residents can bring foam packaging (Styrofoam™, i.e., expanded polystyrene) to the Mission Recycling Depot or Mission Bottle Depot. This includes clean foam food containers and trays (meat trays, egg cartons, cups, etc.) and foam cushion packaging (from electronics, small appliances, etc.). Residents can also bring all the same material as for the blue bag and cart collection programs, however, material must be sorted by residents into the appropriate bins at the recycling depots.

When, how, and more

 

When will the changes to accepted material take effect?

Changes to the curbside collection program will take effect on April 3, 2017. Changes to the multi-family onsite collection program will take effect between April 15th and the end of April. Starting in early February, the District, along with Recycle BC, will begin an advertising program to communicate changes including acceptable materials and local drop-off options for residents.

Is my curbside collection day the same?

Yes, your collection day will be the same. The 2017 curbside calendar that was mailed to your home in late 2017 is still in effect. The District-provided Black Box for glass will be collected every second week on your garbage collection day.

Are the curbside collection limits the same?

Yes. Residents receiving curbside collection can put out an unlimited number of blue bags weekly, unlimited containers of compostables weekly and up to two 80-litre garbage containers every second week. The District-provided Black Box for glass will be collected every second week on your garbage collection day.

If I have glass or film plastic in my blue bag in the first week of April, will my blue bag not get collected?

If the blue bag materials were acceptable for collection prior to April, then they will be collected through April regardless. However, if a blue bag contains glass or film plastic, a notice will be left behind, advising that glass and/or film plastic, which are no longer acceptable in the collection program, were found in the blue bag. As of May 1, blue bags containing glass or film plastic will receive a non-conformance sticker and be left behind.

I have heard that use of the blue bag will not be allowed in the future?

The blue bag will be allowed to be used until approximately October 2018. Prior to this date, the District will deliver reusable containers for mixed recycling to every household receiving curbside collection. In October 2017, the District will provide further information to residents on this additional change. After the changeover date in October 2018, blue bags of recycling will no longer be collected at the curbside and residents will no longer have to purchase blue bags to participate in the curbside recycling program.

Where can I get more information?

More information is available from the District at: www.mission.ca/waste-management, engineering@mission.ca or 604-820-3736. Additional information is also available at the Recycle BC website at www.recyclebc.ca.