A complete ban on cardboard in local landfills is slated to come into effect later this year, say public works officials from the Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine and the City of Terrace.
“There’s a market for cardboard, it’s an affordable material to transport south and get out of the waystream,” says regional district works manager Roger Tooms. “The cardboard ban [in landfills] I would expect will be in place this year.”
Residents in Terrace and Thornhill already have a curbside program that includes cardboard, so the ban has more of an effect on businesses and other institutions not included in the curbside service.
City of Terrace manager of public works Rob Schibli said Terrace will also ban cardboard once the regional district has finalized the contract for the cardboard processing.
“The city would work with the [regional district] to implement cardboard bans at our local landfills,” said Schibli.
Tooms said the goal is to have the new Forceman Ridge landfill, located 30 kilometres south on Hwy37, operating by mid-2016 and the ban would apply there as well as to the Thornhill and Terrace dumps, both of which will be closed.
The Thornhill location will be converted into a transfer station for subsequent transport of waste to the new facility.
“The ICI [Industrial, Commercial, Institutional] sector would either self haul depending on who they are or they are going to hire a contractor like some of them do now with regards to diverting their cardboard,” said Tooms.
Businesses will either drop cardboard off themselves or pay for the service provided by companies such as Do Your Part and Waste Management.
Do Your Part, which currently processes Terrace curbside recycling, is moving this week to a new building near its current Thornhill location and will be purchasing a compactor to deal with the influx of cardboard if it’s awarded the processing contract.
Owner Kasey Lewis says she is positioning herself to take on the contract from the regional district for the increased cardboard.
She will then sell the compacted cardboard to southern markets. She said the price changes and that currently $80 a ton is a ballpark figure for what a recycler would get per ton.
“This cardboard contract will require a big, big baler,” said Lewis.
“With the extension it will require to put into the building, the total investment will be probably a quarter of a million. It’s a big deal, but, there’s a lot of cardboard out there.”
She said all the materials end up in Surrey or Kelowna where it is processed and then sold to the highest bidder. Currently most of the newsprint she ships south ends up in Oregon.
Tooms acknowledged that dealing with waste isn’t cheap.
“We are looking at putting these new facilities in places that are going to cost a lot of money, the cost for solid waste management is increasing, and we’re looking to put in systems that work, and work for most.”
“We don’t expect we will have to police it at the end of the day,” he added.
For Lewis, who started small during the days when there was no large scale recycling program in Terrace, her startup business has prospered as the recycling industry has blossomed.
“The depot is going really well. I encourage everyone who comes in if they do have curbside service they should continue using it, but we are collecting a lot of glass, a lot of styrofoam, lots of plastic bags. We are closed Mondays though.”
The new facility is being leased by Geier Waste Services and is located at 3467 Highway 16 East.
It is large, and she says it will make the drop-off recycling a lot more efficient.