RECYCLING, zero waste, waste diversion. Call it what you want but it all comes down to chucking less stuff into the dump and it’s going to become a major issue in the next several years.
That’s because the city is going to close its Kalum Lake Drive dump as part of the plan to open a larger one in conjunction with the regional district at Forceman Ridge near Onion Lake. As much as recycling et al. is an environmental and moral issue, it is also going to become an economic one because of the added distance of trucking garbage.
That translates into simple math – the less that needs to be trucked, the less the cost will be.
But reducing the amount of garbage in the first place will be no easy task for a small city of limited financial means for, make no mistake, this kind of thing will cost money. It always does. Think of the new fees for disposing electronic items.
In a sense, it will also come down to forcing change under the threat of increasing overall taxpayer costs.
And that’s going to be a challenge because it will involve changing attitudes. Witness the trouble the city and the regional district had last year in even signing people up for a free test of curbside recycling.
To a significant extent, recycling is viewed as something only done by certain people of certain financial means. Making recycling a city-driven and taxpayer-financed program is a tall order.