Getting the inside scoop on waste diversion in Castlegar

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This week, the students of Ms. Elias’ Gr 4/5 and Mrs. Evdokimoff’s Gr.5/6 classes got a chance to tour the Ootischenia Landfill and the Waste Management Recycling Facility in Brilliant. It was an eye opening experience for the students to see where our waste goes when we throw it ‘away’. At the Ootischenia Landfill, we learned about different Product Stewardship programs and other initiatives to keep waste out of the landfill. We also saw an exciting demo of garbage being crushed and buried at the landfill and learned about the importance of maximizing space to prolong the lifespan of the site. The students were shocked to see things like cardboard and perfectly good toys in the garbage pile and couldn’t understand why such things would be thrown away when recycling and reusing is made so easy for us! At the Waste Management Recycling Facility in Brilliant, we saw just how much recyclable material is produced and shipped for processing in the West Kootenay Region. Despite the huge bales of compressed recyclables, we were surprised to learn that less than half of Castlegar households participate in curb side recycling. We all agreed that number should be at 100%! We walked away from the tours inspired to do our part to reduce, reuse and recycle our way to Zero Waste!