Don’t “Wishcycle” Your Waste – Sort It Right to Help City Avoid Fines
Port Coquitlam has launched a new campaign asking residents and businesses not to “wishcycle” as it seeks to avoid significant fines for mis-sorted waste and soiled recyclables.
Recycle BC – which is responsible for residential curbside recycling in B.C. – has alerted the City that it must reduce contamination in its blue carts by 25 per cent by July 22, 2022to avoid fines. Contamination occurs when either the wrong items are placed in carts, or when recyclables are not clean and dry.
Port Coquitlam has been unable to achieve Recycle BC’s three per cent contamination limit and has an average contamination rate of over 12%.
If the City cannot reduce contamination in its blue carts,Recycle BC will impose fines of $5,000 per load of material, forup to $120,000 per year.
During Waste Reduction Week Oct. 18 to 24, the City is highlighting the resources available to help residents sortwaste properly, rather than “wishcycling” – or guessing where items go.
Resources include the free PoCo Sort & Report app, online and printed materials linked through portcoquitlam.ca/sortitright and two Environmental Ambassadors who are out in the community conducting cart audits and educational outreach.
In Port Coquitlam’s blue recycling carts, the top fivecontamination problems in Port Coquitlam are:
It’s equally important that recyclables are clean and dry. As carts are collected and their contents mingled together, food residue or liquid left in containers will contaminate large quantities of clean recyclables – all which will then be sent to the landfill.
Residents can do their part to reduce the most common contamination problems in all three carts in Port Coquitlam by:
The Sort it Right! program provides a variety of user-friendly resources and tools, including:
This year’s theme for Waste Reduction Week is the circular economy, which encourages people to think about reducing waste at all stages of an item’s life, from manufacture to how they can be recycled or reused. Visit wrwcanada.com for information.
Manager of Communications & Administrative Services
City of Port Coquitlam