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Kelowna  

Cart snoopers are back

Regional district recycling ambassadors are back in the Central Okanagan.

And they'll be keeping an eye on what goes in your cart this summer.

The ambassadors will randomly check what’s under the blue lid and inside curbside recycling carts.

“Most residents are doing a pretty good job including only what’s acceptable to put in the carts. But recycling audits show there are still a significant number of unacceptable items going into our recycling stream," says solid waste manager Jodie Foster.

“Things like plastic bags, garbage, books, food waste, garden hoses, plastic shovels, hazardous waste, electronics, scrap metals, textiles, even yard waste."

Foster says the region is close to eight per cent contamination on average, and needs to be three per cent or less to avoid penalties.

"We need to do a better job, and that requires continuous education and monitoring," she says.

If the ambassadors spot anything that doesn't belong, they’ll leave information explaining what went wrong. They'll be looking for:

Garbage

  • Garden hoses, landscape edging and tarps
  • Paper towels and tissues
  • Non-packaging plastics such as toys, Tupperware type containers, laundry baskets

Items recyclable at depots and other locations (but not in the cart)

  • Plastic bags including bagged recyclables
  • Styrofoam
  • Glass
  • Soft plastics such as cling wrap, bubble wrap, chip and snack bags, zipper bags
  • Electronics and small appliances
  • Textiles such as clothes, fabric and pillows
  • Soft cover novels and hard cover books and textbooks
  • Hazardous waste
  • Hazards such as syringes and propane tanks

About 2,500 letters each year are sent to residents when the wrong materials are found in recycling, garbage and yard waste carts.



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