This week is National Waste Reduction Week. There are 7 themes throughout the week: Circular Economy Monday, Textiles Tuesday, E-Waste Wednesday, Plastics Thursday, Food Waste Friday, Sharing Economy Saturday, and Swap and Repair Sunday. If you follow the RDEK on Facebook, Instagram, or X, we will have daily feature posts all week.

When it comes to the waste we produce, we often think of product packaging, used paper towels, food scraps, and anything that might not easily be identifiable as a recyclable product. Some exploration of our page may offer some recycling options that you were not aware of.

Here are some things to think about when trying to reduce the amount of waste you produce –

At home and work:
• Reduce paper use by using both sides
• Pack your lunch in reusable containers
• Rent items that are not used very often
• Reuse jars and containers for storage

When shopping:
• Reduce waste by avoiding over-packaged or unnecessary disposable items
• Avoid food packaged in individual servings—where feasible and safe, buy in bulk
• Buy drinks in refillable containers where available
• Use your own reusable bags
• When shopping consider buying used items. There are many “used” stores that offer refurbished items that work as good as new.
• Purchase products with recycled content
• Purchase durable products that can be repaired and reused.

We’d like to highlight some of the ways the RDEK is supporting waste reduction and offer some alternative services that are available throughout the region.

Recycle BC Depots
Our Recycle BC Depots are available for residential recycling across the Regional District and you can find a list of their locations by clicking here. We would like to direct as much residential recycling as possible to the Recycle BC Depots as the RDEK gets paid per tonne collected as a registered Collector.

Products we accept for recycling at Recycle BC Depots include:
• Paper & Cardboard Products
• Flexible Plastics
• Containers
• Coloured/Printed Styrofoam
• White Styrofoam
• Glass Containers

Note: the curbside recycling programs in Cranbrook, Kimberley, and Fernie are part of the Recycle BC System; however, do not accept the same range of materials.

For a full list of products accepted and “what goes where”, click here.

Yellow Bin System
The Yellow Bin system has operated in the RDEK for over 20 years. Yellow Bins can still be found throughout the region outside businesses, schools, and rural areas. Through this system we don’t have access to the same markets, the Yellow Bins accept only paper, cardboard, tin cans, grocery bags, and plastics 1-6 (no styrofoam). Because we have to pay per tonne for material collected in the Yellow Bins, we encourage anyone with residential recycling to take it to their nearest Recycle BC Depot.

Earth Machine composters are available from the RDEK for $52 including tax.

Other products you have in your home that you may not know can be recycled include:
• Small Appliances & Electronics
• Oil, Oil Filters & Antifreeze
• Light bulbs & Fixtures
• Tires
• Batteries & Cellphones
• Outdoor Power Equipment
• Smoke Alarms & CO2 Alarms
• Medications
• Hazardous Waste & Paint

For more information on where can take these products, click here.

We all have a part to play in waste reduction and we hope that these resources help you discover a new way to reduce, reuse, or recycle.

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