The Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako (RDBN) is taking steps to ensure rural residents aren’t left with out recycling.
This comes after Recycle BC cancelled their contract with Bulkley Valley Bottle Depot on Feb. 24. The depot on Nineteenth Avenue had been collecting all material that is available in curbside pick-up such as cardboard, mixed paper, aluminium tin cans, plastic containers for those who don’t have their recycling picked up by the Town of Smithers or Village of Telkwa.
The contract between the two parties ended without a real explanation for the public.
However, after an outcry from residents, the RDBN has stepped in and are now in talks with Recycle BC to create a place for people to bring their recycling.
RDBN Area A (Smithers rural) Director Mark Fisher said negotiations are currently underway to create small scale depot at the Smithers/Telkwa transfer station.
“This is the basic diversion activity that we can do to reduce things going into the landfill,” he said. “All the material can be recycled so there isn’t a point of it going into the landfill. People are paying eco fees with the products when they buy them in the store so we should using that program.”
Fisher said he posted information about the changes to recycling on his Facebook page and had over 2,000 people engaged.
“We did have it in the past. I don’t think it would be priority if we didn’t have it, but because we had it and then it stopped, people are upset. There is a lot of discussion and anxiety around it. People attached to recycling here in the valley. We’ve had it pretty good and people expect that level of service,” he added.
Fisher said this new contact will also include hiring two people. He said two permanent, full-time recycling attendant positions will be posted soon.
Exactly what can be recycled and when the depot will be open still needs to be established.
Fisher said the details will be available shortly but he wanted residents to know things are in the works and help ease their concerns.
The Bulkley Valley Bottle Depot will continue to be a return it depot for deposit cans and bottles. It is also still a place for people to bring their corrugated cardboard.
This new contact with the RDBN won’t affect the curbside program. The relationship between Recycle BC and Smithers and Area Recycling Society, who manages all the curbside material that is picked up by the Town of Smithers, will continue as usual.