Are you putting glass containers in your curb-side recycling bin hoping they will be recycled? Waste Management, the company responsible for pick-up of curb side recycling has noticed an increase of glass in the blue bins.
Unfortunately, including glass in your curbside material is considered “wishful recycling”. Instead of being recycled, the glass puts the rest of your recycling at risk of becoming garbage and being sent to landfill.
The paper and product packaging you recycle at the curb can all be properly sorted mechanically at a materials sorting facility. The clean materials are baled and sent to be processed into a commodity that can be sold on the world markets.
Glass at the curb tends to break, then shard and contaminate the rest of the recycling. This contaminated material will not be able to be sorted cleanly. Then presto: a valuable load of recycling is now trash because overseas markets are no longer taking contaminated loads of recycling.
Fortunately, there is still a way to recycle glass containers. Once they’ve been rinsed you can bring them to the Recycle BC Depot on 3rd Ave. or the Alberni Valley Landfill. Here, they are collected in a separate tote before transporting for processing.
Not just any glass
Jars that contain products like jams and pickles have a different chemical composition and melting point than drinking glasses, oven-ware or window panes. This means they require different recycling processes. Only glass jars that contained products are currently recyclable at Recycle BC depots.
Wishful recycling doesn’t work.