As of Jan. 1, 2022, a new bylaw will come into effect banning corrugated cardboard from going to all solid waste disposal facilities in the Thompson-Nicola Regional District (TNRD). These include all TNRD transfer stations and Eco-Depots, as well as privately owned facilities such as the Campbell Hill landfill in Cache Creek.
Under the new bylaw, corrugated cardboard is designated as “Mandatory Recyclable Material”, meaning that item must be recycled; it cannot go to landfill. The bylaw is similar to ones already in place in most regions of the province.
As of Jan. 1, 2022, any load dumped at a landfill or transfer station that contains more than 10 per cent corrugated cardboard (by volume) can incur a fine based on the size of the load. The fine amount is 50 per cent of the disposal fee for the violating load, meaning that a load that would normally cost $80 in disposal fees will be fined an additional $40.
Fines can only be issued by designated inspectors; landfill staff, such as scale attendants, will not have the authority to issue them. Enforcement will focus on large commercial and municipal loads; inspectors will not be breaking open individual garbage bags to inspect the contents.
Enforcement will only take place at landfills and transfer stations; the TNRD will not be inspecting curbside bins. It will be up to individual haulers to control what is in their loads, and the TNRD will be working with commercial waste haulers and municipalities to help them educate their customers/residents in order to avoid fines. Extensive communication and education, including “mock ticketing”, will take place at landfills and transfer stations over the next six months ahead of the bylaw coming into effect.
For the time being, cardboard is the only mandatory recyclable material. However, the bylaw could be amended in the future to require recycling of other materials, such as all paper products, as well as plastic, glass, and metal packaging.
“We know the vast majority of customers are already complying with this bylaw by recycling their cardboard,” says Jamie Vieira, TNRD Manager of Environmental Services. “Unfortunately, we still see some loads going into landfills that have a very high percentage of easily recyclable materials. This bylaw is simply another tool to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill.”