The Regional District of Nanaimo collected approximately 10,000 old waste and garbage bins to be repurposed or reused. (PQB News file photo)

The Regional District of Nanaimo collected approximately 10,000 old waste and garbage bins to be repurposed or reused. (PQB News file photo)

10,000 old Nanaimo-area garbage bins repurposed elsewhere on the Island

Used containers donated to school districts, communities to be reused

Since switching to an automated garbage collection system last October, Regional District of Nanaimo residents were encouraged to repurpose or reuse the old waste containers.

The RDN attempted to hire a contractor to collect and transport the used containers but the request for expression failed to garner any interest. It left the RDN with no choice but to carry out the Used Waste Container Collection and Recycling Program themselves. The board in June approved a $60,000 budget but at end of the program, only $40,000 was spent.

The chair of the solid waste management select committee, Ben Geselbracht, commended staff for successfully completing the challenging initiative that helped divert the containers from ending up in the landfill.

“It was already an ambitious agenda so thank you very much for finding the time to execute this so well,” said Geselbracht at a committee meeting on Jan. 5.

Between Nov. 1-3 in 2020, residents who were not able to repurpose the old waste bins were given the option to drop them off free of charge at the used waste containers at either the RDN Church Road Transfer Station or at the RDN landfill in Nanaimo. Also between Nov. 17-28 residents were given the opportunity to set out their used waste containers for pickup at curbside.

READ MORE: Collection of recycling from multi-family properties in Qualicum Beach to end April 30

According to RDN staff, the program was well-received, as there was a high rate of participation for both options. At conclusion of the program, the RDN collected more than 10,000 used containers.

The majority were redistributed back to the community throughout Vancouver Island. They were repurposed for things like storage for emergency kits, road salt, tools, potting soil, mulch, yard waste, animal feed, storage for depot items such as film plastics, glass, Styrofoam or refundables, rain barrels and DYI root vegetable planters.

The program was also able to provide approximately 700 used recycling/composting containers free of charge to the School District 68 (Nanaimo-Ladysmith). It was extended to neighbouring Comox Valley and Cowichan Valley school districts to bolster their zero waste education programs. The program also supported the RDN-sponsored zero waste education that is in line with the provincial curriculum within Schools Districts 68 and 69.

Cowichan Tribes also took 1,200 waste and garbage container that were distributed in the community as a way to increase participation in their waste diversion programs.

Approximately 400 damaged containers were sent to local recycling processors where they were baled and shipped to Merlin Plastics in Richmond to be recycled.

Michael.Briones@pqbnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

GarbageNanaimo Regional DistrictRecycling

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A suspect has been arrested in connection with fires at Drinkwater Elementary (pictured) and École Mount Prevost. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Arson suspect arrested after fires at Cowichan Valley schools

Drinkwater Elementary and Mount Prevost schools hit within a week

Danielle Groenendijk raised more than twice her goal for Parkinson’s Canada. (Photo submitted)
VIU volleyball athlete doubles fundraising goal for Parkinson’s

Daily runs over 30 days by Groenendijk add up to 254 kilometres

Seven streets in downtown Duncan, including Station Street, will soon have new native names added to their signage. (Submitted graphic)
New street signs in Duncan in English and Hul’q’umi’num

Seven streets to get additional native names on signs

Possible COVID-19 exposures may have occurred at Alexander Elementary School on Jan. 13, 14 and 15. (Google Maps)
Alexander Elementary in Duncan announces possible COVID-19 exposures

Exposures may have occurred on Jan. 13, 14 and 15

North Cowichan to add three more off-leash dog areas in the new year. (File photo)
North Cowichan adds three new off-leash areas

Trial program runs through 2021, but not the summer months

Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin, vice-president of logistics and operations at the Public Health Agency of Canada, speaks at a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa, on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
B.C. records 500 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, 14 deaths

Outbreak at Surrey Pretrial jail, two more in health care

A woman writes a message on a memorial mural wall by street artist James “Smokey Devil” Hardy during a memorial to remember victims of illicit drug overdose deaths on International Overdose Awareness Day, in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on Monday, August 31, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. paramedics respond to record-breaking number of overdose calls in 2020

On the front lines, COVID-19 has not only led to more calls, but increased the complexity

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Nanaimo RCMP are seeking the public’s help after a man allegedly assaulted a clerk at James General Store on Victoria Road on Jan. 18. (Submitted photo)
Suspect screams at customer then assaults store clerk in Nanaimo

RCMP asking for information about Jan. 18 incident at James General Store

Chartwell Malaspina Care Residence in Nanaimo. (News Bulletin file photo)
Two Nanaimo care-home residents have died during COVID-19 outbreak

Death reported Monday was the second related to Chartwell Malaspina outbreak, says Island Health

Rod Bitten of Union Bay won $500,000 in the Lotto Max draw on Jan. 15. Photo supplied
Vancouver Island electrician gets shocking surprise with $500K Extra win

Rod Bitten has been hard at work with home renovations, which is… Continue reading

Eighteen-year-old Aidan Webber died in a marine accident in 2019. He was a Canadian Junior BMX champion from Nanaimo. (Submitted)
Inadequate safety training a factor in teen BMX star’s workplace death in 2019

Aidan Webber was crushed by a barge at a fish farm near Port Hardy

Oyster River Fire Rescue members were called out to a suspicious fire in Black Creek. Two vehicles parked at a private residence were destroyed by fire. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Rescue
Suspicious fire destroys two vehicles at Vancouver Island residence

Oyster River Fire Rescue personnel were dispatched to a fire at a… Continue reading

Members of the BC RCMP Explosive Disposal Unit (EDU) is on route to Drummond Park opposite of Fulford Habour on Saltspring Island after the discovery of a suspicious cylindrical-shaped device. (Google/Screencap)
Bomb disposal unit en route to Salt Spring Island after suspicious device found in park

Police say a resident discovered the device Wednesday morning in Drummond Park opposite BC Ferries terminal

Most Read