The Columbia Shuswap Regional District is looking to expand its recycling offering to include hard-cover books and commercially generated cardboard.
Ben Van Nostrand, team leader of Environmental Health, said books used to be accepted under a previous recycling contract, but with the conversion to the MMBC program, the policy on books is not consistent across the region.
“We’d like to see what the costs are and whether we could use a tipping fee or taxation to help keep these sorts of items out of our landfills,” said Van Nostrand.
The issue is particularly prevalent for colleges and school libraries who often have large volumes of used or damaged books that are no longer suitable for borrowing. This leaves them with little option other than throwing them in the garbage.
“The other thing that happens in rural areas is people take stuff like that home and simply burn it,” which isn’t good for anyone,” said director Rene Talbot. “It would be far better to allow people to recycle it at the transfer station.”
The board voted to have staff investigate options for the recycling program and wrote a formal letter to MMBC requesting these items be formally added to the list of accepted products.