Mattress Recycling owner Fabio Scaldaferri said there were three main reasons for opting out of Recycle BC collection that his group had been participating in since 2018. (Pattie Desjardins photo)

Mattress Recycling owner Fabio Scaldaferri said there were three main reasons for opting out of Recycle BC collection that his group had been participating in since 2018. (Pattie Desjardins photo)

Hope’s Mattress Recycling no longer collecting materials for Recycle BC

Hope residents currently have no place to return ‘flexible plastic products.’

Recycle BC is looking for a new partner in Hope, to help collect items that aren’t taken care of through curbside pickup.

Up until January, locals were able to bring ‘flexible plastics’ like bags, film, food pouches and bubble wrap along with packing styrofoam to Mattress Recycling at 1046 4th Ave. But the covered structure that was being used to house the recycled items collapsed during January’s heavy snowfall, and there are no plans to put it up again.

“We wanted to update that our household recycling tent is permanently closed,” the organization said in a Feb. 23 Facebook post. “We opened it on a trial basis and will not be continuing with the program for a number of practical reasons.”

While Mattress Recycling will continue to accept (on Tuesdays and Thursdays) mattresses, furniture, metal and metal appliance recycling, as well as batteries, foam, car seats and clothing/textiles, there is now a gap for people wishing to see their flexible plastics stay out of the landfill.

Mattress Recycling owner Fabio Scaldaferri said there were three main reasons for opting out of Recycle BC collection that his group had been participating in since 2018.

The first was the structure collapse.

The second is the pending construction of a 14,000 square foot warehouse on the property, and the third is the economics of the program not making sense.

“The amounts that they pay don’t cover the costs of operating it,” Scaldaferri said. “They might claim too, but the reality is different. Our guy who was managing it gets paid pretty well and it didn’t even come close to covering his wages, so it ends up being an expense.”

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Once the decision to bow out was made, Scaldaferri said he reached out to the District of Hope and Recycle BC to see if there could be a transition from his organization to another.

“I was hoping to get kind of a seamless switch to some sort of society or whatever,” he said. “Unfortunately no one’s really stepped up and said anything about how they’d like to take that on. My number one suggestion was to transition it over to the Transfer Station because it’s District run and seems like the most appropriate place, but I didn’t get much from those conversations.”

Recycle BC is an organization that manages residential packaging and paper on behalf of producers who put packaging and paper into the marketplace. Those producers are obligated by law to manage their materials. Recycle BC does that through curbside collection and the 230 depots across the province.

“We pay incentive rates to depots based on the volume and type of material they collect,” said Recycle BC’s Dave Lefebvre. “They typically collect other things as well, like deposit items or batteries, and they choose whether or not to collect our material.”

Lefebvre said Recycle BC is now actively looking for a new location and partner.

“We’ve been reaching out to alternate locations, talking to the District and other stakeholders to see if there’s any interest in collecting our materials,” he noted. “We would like to get the word out that we are looking for any interested parties.

“We are hopeful we will have a solution in place sooner rather than later.”

Two boxes would need to be checked by a new partner. That person/group would need to have a covered structure and need to be able to supervise during recycling drop-off hours.

For Hope residents wondering what to do until a solution is found, Lefebvre said materials can be taken to Agassiz or Chilliwack.

“We also have a bunch of tips on how to manage materials if you’re holding on to them for any length of time,” he added. “The majority of materials are collected at the curb in Hope, so hopefully this is only a temporary and minor inconvenience.”

For more info, visit recyclebc.ca


@ProgressSports
eric.welsh@hopestandard.com

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