Reuse centres to close in the Boundary
The board of directors of the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) has directed staff to close the Reuse Centres at RDKB landfills.
The Reuse Centres which have been in place at McKelvey Creek (Trail), Grand Forks and West Boundary (Greenwood) landfills will shut down on April 9th .
“When we introduced the Reuse Centres at our landfills in the 1990s, this was one of the few options people had for reuse,” says RDKB board chair Grace McGregor. “But things change and we know that now there are lots of other options out there. People can easily exchange items on-line or on Facebook without having to load up their old couches and drive them out to the landfill.”
Reuse Centres and Free Sheds were established at many landfills in BC in the 1990’s as a last chance for residents to keep useful items out of the landfills. However this program has never really returned quantifiable benefits.
“It is hard to say how much this program has actually kept materials out of the landfill,” says Environmental Services Director Alan Stanley. “Anecdotally we can see the same couch coming back for disposal within the month. We see lots of stuff dropped off that no one picks up.”
Much has changed since Reuse Centres were first introduced at RDKB waste facilities. Now there are several social media options for free or inexpensive items. The RDKB encourages people to seek out other options before landfilling useful items. There are websites like Craigslist, Kijiji or Bhubble. There are at least 15 Facebook sites where Kootenay-Boundary residents exchange used goods for cash or for free. There are sections of local newspapers like the Boundary Free4All in the Boundary Creek Times.
On April 16th the RDKB will team up with the RDCK to promote Trash To Treasure Day. This is a day when people put their useful items at the end of their driveway with a Free sign. Anyone is then free to come by and collect and cart away these treasures. While this event is being held in conjunction with Earth Day on April 22, the RDKB encourages people to reuse and exchange goods any day.
The RDKB promotes waste reduction solutions that build people’s notion of individual responsibility in the community.
“People can put unwanted items at the end of their driveway any day,” says Stanley. “This is a very successful strategy that doesn’t involve loading up a truck and driving items out to the landfill. People can exchange stuff with their neighbours any day, any time without the RDKB being involved. Of course, if you do this, please make sure you keep the roadside tidy and remove any items that are not taken.”
For more information on ways to reuse and ways to find cheap or free items find links onwww.rdkb.com