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Find out What the Cowichan Valley is Recycling and Putting in the Garbage
Duncan, BC – Each year, regional districts in BC are required to report on how much garbage and recycling was produced and managed within its district. The data used to calculate the amount of garbage and recycling within the Cowichan Valley Regional District (CVRD) comes from CVRD recycling centres, private waste management facilities, and provincial stewardship programs.
The CVRD has published garbage and recycling data from 2015. It shows approximately 73,000 tonnes of recyclable material were diverted from the landfill through recycling and composting. This equals to about 75 per cent of the total amount of recycling and garbage generated within the region from residents, businesses and institutions, compared to 60 per cent 10 years ago.
“Residents and businesses in the Cowichan Valley played a key role in diverting waste from landfills,” says Chair Jon Lefebure. “While we know we still have some work to do in decreasing our recycling contamination rate, the commitment to diverting waste from landfill has been significant.”
In 2015 the materials with the largest quantities recycled or composted in the Cowichan Valley were:• 26,178 tonnes of food and yard waste • 25,138 tonnes of metal • 10,335 tonnes of construction waste• 4,100 tonnes of packaging and printed paper
The amount of garbage sent to the landfill declined from 31,781 tonnes in 2005 to 24,595 tonnes in 2015. This is good news considering the population of the region has grown by approximately 6,000 people in same period of time.
While we are great at recycling, the CVRD waste data shows we are consuming more goods than ever as there is more recycling material to manage. In 2005, each person recycled about 0.61 tonnes of material. Today we each recycle almost .90 tonnes each.
“There are a couple of things to consider when we look at the implications of creating more recycling,” says Tauseef Waraich, Manager, Recycling and Waste Management. “A big portion of the recyclable material created in our region is processed locally. This allows for a strong local recycling industry and local jobs. On the other hand, while it’s a good thing that we recycle more, as individuals and organizations we need to continue to reduce material use, when possible. Even recyclable materials have an environmental impact.”
For more information on waste in the CVRD visit cvrd.bc.ca/recycling.