The City of Revelstoke is reporting about 70 per cent of eligible residences are using the curbside recycling program that began at the start of January.

The City of Revelstoke is reporting about 70 per cent of eligible residences are using the curbside recycling program that began at the start of January.

City says curbside recycling a success; estimate 70% usage

Despite a slow start, the City of Revelstoke reports residents are coming around to the new curbside recycling program.

Despite a slow start, the City of Revelstoke reports residents are coming around to the new curbside recycling program.

A January waste committee meeting caused some nail-biting when it was reported only about 10 per cent of eligible residences were putting out bags of recycling. However, council heard that number was only from the first week, and in the next seven weeks usage had improved.

At their Feb. 14 regular meeting, city council heard that the rate has improved dramatically.

Public Works director Darren Komonoski said he had spoken with representatives from the contractor Bresco that day. “He’s looking at about 70 per cent usage now,” Komonoski told council. “So, definitely people are using it, and [Bresco’s] surprised at the high number of usage.”

Komonoski added.”We would definitely consider it a success right now.”

Council also discussed the decision to use clear plastic bags instead of reusable bins. Komonoski said there would have been a big cost to buy the bins, and that the city was trying to get the program in place quickly. Waiting for funds to buy the bins would have delayed the program. He added that the bags are recycled.

Komonoski also said compliance was better with clear bags; in other municipalities non-recyclables are lumped into the bins, he said, causing spoilage and contamination that results in everything being dumped in the landfill. With clear bags, it’s easier to spot contamination and leave the bags.

Engineering director Brian Mallett referred the public to a recycling FAQ on their website.

The Times Review also published a Q&A with the city about the plastic bag issue and other questions in this story from January.