Recycling way up in 2005

There was a big change in how much Fort Frances residents recycled between 2004 and 2005, according to a report to council from Operations and Facilities manager Doug Brown on Monday night.
“The tonnage is up quite a bit,” noted Brown. “We were at 240 tonnes that we diverted in 2004, and this past year we’re at 428—that’s a 78 percent increase,” he noted.
In 2005, the town saw a total of 353.98 tonnes of non-glass materials picked up and some 74.14 tonnes of glass dropped off at the Wright Avenue depot (this glass was delivered to Nexcycle, a glass manufacturing plant in Aberfoyle, Ont., last fall).
“The tonnage is up because people are allowed to recycle more at the curbside,” Brown said. “There’s no limit to what you’re putting out. You can put out as much recycling as you want and we’ll pick it up.
“And there’s more products we’ll pick up.
“Remember 2004 was the transition year,” added Brown. “We never had cardboard, there was limited magazines—there were too many rules with [Koochiching County] and International Bildrite.
“Then Nov. 1, we went to Metro [and the variety of recyclables increased].”
The residential waste diversion rate was 13.47 percent in 2005. This is based on 2,749 tonnes of total residential waste being disposed at the landfill site that year.
Brown noted recycling costs also were down.
“Our net costs were $316.28 per tonne in 2005, where it was $443 in 2004. So we dropped about $180 per tonne,” he said.
Brown noted a large component of this is curbside collection ($234.09 per tonne).
The big difference in the cost between years was the town signed a five-year contract with Asselin Transportation for collection, as opposed to the town running its own truck and dealing with other more expensive contractors.
As such, Brown expects the costs for 2006 to be about the same as last year.
The annual recycling report is a requirement under Ontario Regulation 101/94 (Recycling and Composting of Municipal Waste), and must be compiled and filed with the province each year.
Brown noted the town is meeting, and is some cases exceeding, the other provincial requirements under Ontario Regulation 101/94.
For instance, there is no requirement for curbside collection of blue box waste and the town could utilize a depot system if it so chose. But presently, the town provides biweekly curbside collection to residential properties and is providing recycling services at a higher-than-required level.
The town currently is meeting the requirements as to which materials it accepts in blue boxes, added Brown.
And the town continues to provide home composters to residents at cost or less ($40), as well as information regarding—and encouraging—recycling and composting.
Last year 13 backyard composters were sold.