Chilliwack – In less than a year, Chilliwack residents on the City’s curbside collection program will be able to recycle glass packaging curbside instead of driving it to the nearest recycling or bottle depot. Council has approved the separate collection of glass packaging containers, such as bottle and jars, as part of the curbside collection program, in order to increase quality of service to residents and increase diversion.
Since joining the Provincial recycling program through Recycle BC, many Chilliwack residents have expressed dissatisfaction over the inability to recycle glass curbside. A fall 2017 waste composition study found that recyclable glass made up 1.5% of the curbside garbage disposed of at the landfill. The improved convenience of collecting glass packaging curbside should increase diversion rates, and reduce recyclable glass in curbside garbage.
Staff estimates that the additional recycling program will be ready to launch by spring or summer 2019. Grey or black 25-30L recycling bins for glass will be provided to all households on the City’s curbside collection program in 2019 as the City’s current agreement with Recycle BC prohibits glass from mixing with other curbside recycling. Additional details about curbside glass collection will be provided to residents well in advance of the program start.
The cost to add curbside glass recycling will be passed along to residents on the City’s curbside program. The total estimated cost per household on the program will be approximately $24 per year. However, through the implementation of separate curbside glass packaging collection, access to glass recycling for residents should be improved, glass contamination in co-mingled recycling reduced and diversion from the landfill increased.
Although curbside recycling is more convenient, it is still not feasible for all recyclable items to be collected curbside. There will continue to be a mandatory component of depot recycling for items such as plastic bags, foam packaging, batteries, light bulbs and electronics.