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Recyclables and Organic wastes will be banned from BC Landfills in 2015

What Happens To Recyclables


Aluminum is sorted to remove non-recyclable material (waste) and then taken to Squamish Scrap Metal for metal types sorting. It is then trucked to Amix Salvage & Sales Ltd. or other BC salvage companies for further sorting and from there shipped to users throughout the world.

Aluminum recycling simply involves re-melting of the metal, which is far less expensive and energy intensive than creating new aluminum through the electrolysis of aluminum oxide, which must first be mined from bauxite ore and then refined using the Bayer process. Recycling scrap aluminum requires only 5% of the energy used to make new aluminum. For this reason, approximately 31% of all aluminum produced in the United States comes from recycled scrap.

Sources for recycled aluminum include aircraft, automobiles, bicycles, boats, computers, cookware, gutters, siding, wire, and many other products that require a strong light weight material, or a material with high thermal conductivity. As recycling does not damage the metal's structure, aluminum can be recycled indefinitely and still be used to produce any product for which new aluminum could have been used.

Tins & Metals

Tins and metals are sorted to remove non-recyclable material (waste) and then taken to Squamish Scrap Metal for metal types sorting. It is then trucked to Amix Salvage & Sales Ltd. or other BC salvage companies for further sorting and from there shipped to users throughout the world.

Steel from cans and other sources is the most recycled packaging material.

The steel industry has been actively recycling for more than 150 years, in large part because it is economically advantageous to do so. It is cheaper to recycle steel than to mine iron ore and manipulate it through the production process to form new steel. Steel does not lose any of its inherent physical properties during the recycling process, and has drastically reduced energy and material requirements compared with refinement from iron ore. The energy saved by recycling reduces the annual energy consumption of the industry by about 75%, which is enough to power eighteen million homes for one year

The collected material is generally shredded in a massive industrial shredding machine and then sorted. The sorting process usually involves either magnetic processes or simply sifting processes. At the end of the sorting, the recycling operation is left with a nearly pure form of scrap metal.

After the scrap metal is sorted, it's entered into a blast furnace that burns at extremely high temperatures. The exact temperature of the furnace varies depending on the metal that is being recycled. The blast furnace melts the scrap metal into its molten (liquid) state and also helps to burn off any impurities or other materials left over from the sorting stage of the process. After the metal is liquefied, it can then be poured into molds for use in new products.

Recycling one ton of steel saves 1,100 kilograms of iron ore, 630 kilograms of coal, and 55 kilograms of limestone.


Glass is collected and taken to the Squamish landfill (a specific area/cell for glass) where it is crushed and stored.

The crushed glass is used continually for road development, maintenance, drainage and upkeep at the landfill site. It is also used for the same reasons by contractors/builders requiring it. They can come to the landfill and take what they need at no cost. A number of aggregate end users will come and use the glass as they need it.

Glass is being reused; the second “R” in the 3Rs (reduce, reuse, recycle). The 3 Rs are placed in order of priority.

Plastic #1 - #5

Plastics are sorted to remove non-recyclable material (waste) and baled in Squamish. They are then trucked to Merlins (primary plastic recycler for BC) where they process #1 and #2 but ship most other mixed plastics overseas.

Plastic is highly versatile, but once made doesn't go away. Recycling plastic into other products saves energy, petroleum and landfill space.

Plastic is typically made from petrochemicals such as oil and natural gas. It can also be made from corn, cotton and other biomasses. There are seven types of plastic resins: Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), High Density Polyethylene (HDPE), Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC, Vinyl), Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE), Polypropylene (PP), Polystyrene (PS) and a composite of several resins.

Plastic can be recycled indefinitely. However, the plastic has to be separated by resin type by hand which takes time and money. At the least, contaminants need to be removed. These include anything that is not plastic such as food and some labels.

Once the plastic is sorted and contaminant-free, the next step is to grind it into tiny pieces called flakes. The flakes get washed and dried and then sent to a machine called an extruder to be melted into pellets. These pellets are what get sold to companies to make into new products.

Anything plastic stands a chance of becoming recycled or having recycled materials already in it. Items most likely to contain recycled materials are garden furniture and tools, composite decking, insulation, sleeping bag filler and some window frames. Currently recycled pellets can only be used to make containers for non-food products.

Plastic Recycling has the highest contaminant levels compared to cardboard, paper and metals. The plastics must be cleaned of food and sauces to be efficiently recycled.

Corrugated Cardboard

Corrugated cardboard is sorted to remove non-recyclable material (waste) and baled in Squamish. Then it is trucked to a mill in Washington State.

Old corrugated containers are an excellent source of fibre for recycling. They can be compressed and baled for cost effective transport. The baled boxes are put in a hydropulper, which is a large vat of warm water for cleaning and processing. The pulp slurry is then used to make new paper and fiber products.

Several technologies are available to sort, screen, filter, and chemically treat the recycled paper. Many extraneous materials are readily removed. Twine, strapping, etc are removed from the hydropulper by a "ragger". Metal straps and staples can be screened out or removed by a magnet. Film-backed pressure sensitive tape stays intact: the PSA adhesive and the backing are both removed together.

The recycled paper fibre is used to make corrugated linerboard, coin wrap, grocery bags, multiwall shipping bags, butcher wrap etc.

Compostable Organics

Compostable Organics are delivered to the Whistler Compost Facility for composting. Soil is produced in 6 months and sold throughout the Corridor.

Compost is composed of organic materials derived from plant and animal matter that has been decomposed largely through aerobic decomposition. The process of composting is simple and practiced by individuals in their homes, farmers on their land, and industrially by cities and factories.

Whistler Composting operates the Wright Environmental In-vessel composting system. This is an industrial form of composting biodegradable waste that occurs in enclosed reactors. This system consists of 2 metal tunnels in which air flow and temperature is controlled, using the principles of a "bioreactor". The exhaust being extracted through a biofilter, with temperature and moisture conditions monitored using probes in the mass to allow maintenance of optimum aerobic decomposition conditions.

Whistler Composting is used for municipal and restaurant organic waste processing, including the final treatment of sewage biosolids, to a safe stable state for reclamation as a soil amendment.

Compost is rich in nutrients. It is used in gardens, landscaping, horticulture, and agriculture. The compost itself is beneficial for the land in many ways, including as a soil conditioner, a fertilizer, addition of vital humus or humic acids, and as a natural pesticide for soil. In ecosystems, compost is useful for erosion control, land and stream reclamation, wetland construction, and as landfill cover.


Tires are collected at the Squamish Landfill and or Whistler Transfer Station and then sent to Pacific Shredding Ltd on Annacis Island.

The first step in the processing of scrap tires is shredding. Medium truck tires are debeaded and slit into halves to facilitate the shredding process. Whole passenger and light truck tires and the medium truck halves are then fed into shredding machines which results in either 4-inch or 2-inch shred.

The majority of this shred is then delivered to Western Rubber Products for granulating and further cleaning. The secondary product is a high quality scrap steel in the form of bead wire that goes to steel recyclers. The crumb rubber is conveyed into a bagging hopper and packaged according to the needs of the customer. The crumb rubber is used in parks, tracks, mats, solid tires, animal beds, and other applications.


Paint is collected at Carneys Recycle Centre, as a member of the Provincial Stewardship Program Product Care, where the collected paint is a paint exchange, where leftover paint is offered free of charge.

Along with this being the most cost-effective and energy-efficient alternative for handling leftover paint, reuse puts paint where it belongs - on buildings, walls, and fences - diverting it away from our sewers, dumps, and landfills. Leftover paint is given away on an as-is, as-available basis. There is no limit on the amount of paint an individual or organization can take. Aerosol paints are not reused to avoid misuse for graffiti.

Leftover products are transported in reusable bins to the Product Care processing facility in Surrey, BC. At the processing facility, consumer containers are inspected, sorted, emptied and the contents are bulked in drums or other shipping containers. Product Care utilizes a number of options for paint recycling including: Reprocessing leftover latex and alkyd paint into paint and coatings products. The amount being reprocessed continues to increase as options become available to the program.

Latex paint is used as a raw material when manufacturing cement. Solvents are extracted from alkyd paints and the recovered solvent is then used in other processes such as asphalt production and Energy Recovery – due to the high solvent content of alkyd paints they are suitable for energy recovery. No paint products are disposed of in the landfill or in any other way. Containers are recycled based on their make up as follow:

Consumer Hazardous Waste

Collected at Carneys Recycle Centre and then through Product Care a Provincial Stewardship Program for proper disposal, the waste is shipped as required to the Product Care Surrey facility for proper disposal.


Because the nature of flammable products, and the fact that many flammable products are intended as fuels to begin with, flammables are managed for energy recovery as alternative fuels in facilities which comply with all air quality regulations.


Due to the nature of pesticides, there is no reuse or recycling option available, and all pesticides are incinerated at high temperature government regulated incinerators.


Due to the nature of gasoline, which is intended to be used as a fuel, waste gasoline is managed as an alternative fuel.

Hazardous Waste containers are recycled based on their make up as follow:

Cell Phones & Household Batteries

These are collected at Carneys Recycle Centre and then shipped to Call2Recycle, a member of the Provincial Stewardship Program. Unsorted used batteries and cell phones collected under the Call2Recycle program are sent to Newalta Services in Fort Erie, Ontario for sorting. From Newalta, sorted materials will be sent to licensed and well operated commercial reclamation facilities in Canada, the U.S and Europe.

Initially, nickel-containing batteries will be processed at Inmetco's facility, Ellwood City, Pennsylvania, lead-containing batteries will be sent to Nova Pb in Ville Ste-Catherine, Quebec, Lithium Ion batteries will be sent to Xstrata in Sudbury, Ontario and non-rechargeable batteries will be sent to a yet to be determined processor.

Sorted alkaline batteries may be sent in bulk (greater than 500 kg) directly to a recycling center located in the province. Cell & mobile phones are also currently sent to Newalta for sorting and then sent to a processor for potential refurbishment or recycling. No waste from this process will be disposed outside of North America.

All of these facilities use thermal recovery processes to reclaim materials. Recovered metal materials include: nickel, iron, lead, cadmium and cobalt. These metals are either returned to rechargeable battery manufacturers or used to make other products such as new batteries or stainless steel. Cell phones will be refurbished and resold when possible with a portion of the proceeds received from the resale of phones benefits select charities. No battery or cell phone waste will be disposed outside of North America. Some processes also recover plastic and other constituents.