Clean Wood: Recycle it or Pay the Price

Clean Wood Recycling

As Metro Vancouver moves toward the goal of recycling 80% of the region’s waste by 2020, new rules are being implemented to divert green waste from the garbage including the organics disposal ban we talked about last week as well as a new clean wood disposal ban effective January 1, 2015.

What is Clean Wood?
For the purposes of the ban, clean wood includes solid wood, lumber and pallets that are unpainted, unstained, untreated and glue free. It’s okay if the wood contains nails, screws, staples or other metal fasteners.

Important Dates and Phases
The first 6 months of the ban -January 1 to June 30, 2015 – will focus on educating customers at all regional facilities including transfer stations and landfills about the clean wood disposal ban. As of July 1, 2015, loads of garbage containing over 10% clean wood will be subject to a 50% surcharge.

Recycle it or Pay the Price
You’ll save money and the environment by recycling clean wood:
1. Recycled clean wood can be used for composting, landscaping mulch or alternative industrial fuel.
2. The fee to recycle clean wood at a Metro Vancouver facility costs less than the garbage disposal fee, not to mention having to pay the price of the 50% surcharges as of July 1.

Why we Like It
Green Coast Rubbish is fully on board with the ban and is already recycling clean wood products as part of its every day operations. In 2013, Green Coast Rubbish composted 30.39 tonnes of clean wood and organic material.

Eamonn Duignan, President of Green Coast Rubbish explains, “It is encouraging to see clean wood being banned from Metro Vancouver facilities, especially when this material can be easily be composted or recycled.  As material recovery options increase and become more economical viable within our region, we hope to see an outright ban of all wood products in the not so distant future.”

Who to Contact
For more information on the clean wood disposal ban, call the Recycling Council of BC’s Recycling Hotline at 604-RECYCLE (604-732-9253) or contact your local municipality.

Pacific Carpet Recycling

We love to work closely with green conscious businesses who care as much the environment as we do. That’s why we’re really excited to have Pacific Carpet Recycling as a partner. They are the only carpet and underlay recycler in Vancouver, and they’re doing great work around the Lower Mainland.

Nothing but carpet from floor to ceiling. Green Coast parked at the Pacific Carpet Recycling warehouse.

Carpet is something that most people take for granted; not really giving it much thought until they are looking to renovate a space. But the amount of waste created from carpet being thrown into our landfills is mindblowing — as much as 80 million lbs are thrown into garbage dumps in Metro Vancouver alone! Even worse, it can take as long as 50 years for it to break down once it’s in there. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Being a petroleum-based product, many types of carpet and underlay are recyclable, and can be made into new flooring, clothing, furniture, auto parts, and other items we use on a daily basis.

Peter Cox the man behind Pacific Coast Recycling. Nothing but smile and carpet!

In recent years, PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) carpet has gained popularity, because it’s manufactured using recycled pop bottles. In theory, this sounds like an excellent green alternative, but at the present time there are no effective means to recycle carpet once it is made from this material. If you are looking for the most environmentally mindful flooring, PCR suggests opting for Nylon carpeting instead, which is completely recyclable.

Though Pacific Carpet Recycling does not deal directly with the consumer public, Green Coast Rubbish has partnered exclusively with them, allowing us to remove the carpet from your home or business (and any other waste that you might need hauled away) and deliver it to PCR on your behalf. If you have any questions about recycling carpet, or the work we do at Green Coast Rubbish, please never hesitate to contact us.

Cleaning of Hoarding Properties

Hoarding is a compulsive behavior that can cause people to collect excessive amounts of items, animals, or garbage in their homes, and feel unwilling or incapable of getting rid of them. It’s an extremely complex issue that can have many negative psychological, health, and safety implications-to the individuals within the space, as well as building owners and surrounding neighbors.

Here are just a few examples of the types of situations we’ve seen:

We removed and recycled 6.4 tonnes of books and paper from this one bedroom apartment in North Vancouver, BC!

Besides having the potential to cause tens of thousands of dollars in property damage, hoarding can also pose threatening health and safety risks, and the accumulation of garbage can lead to infestations of vermin and insects.

Hoarding 2

There are hundreds of instances of hoarding throughout the Lower Mainland every year. In extreme cases, some properties have caught fire, or had permanent structural damage to buildings. The issue has gotten so serious that the City of Vancouver has set up a Hoarding Action Response Team to help address the issues, in areas such as the Downtown Eastside.

Haording 1

For property owners and building managers, dealing with the aftermath of tenant hoarders can feel like a nightmare. At Green Coast Rubbish, we’ve had extensive hands-on experience tackling these types of situations. We alleviate the stress by helping clients and their families sort, remove, and dispose of any and all unwanted items — and ensure that everything is diverted or recycled through the proper channels. For more information about our range of services, please feel free to contact us.

Drywall Recycling

Drywall (also known as gypsum, gyprock or sheetrock) is a highly recyclable and widely used construction material that is originally derived from the common mineral gypsum. A unique characteristic of drywall is that it can be essentially recycled forever with no degradation to the material. Old and discarded drywall can be ground up, turned into a paste and repressed into new panels.

Originally developed in the early 1900’s, it became popular as a lightweight and more convenient alternative to traditional materials of lath and plaster, which were typically used at the time.

toxic-drywall-china-537x356

Today drywall can be found throughout the world, and it is typically used when constructing interior walls and ceilings. Though drywall is 100% recyclable, if it’s not disposed of properly, it can have damaging effects on the environment — including being harmful marine life if is dumped into our waterways, or allowed to come in contact with storm drains. It also has the potential to clog pipes or block water flow in those areas, so disposing drywall in environmentally conscious ways is important.

During 2013, Green Coast Rubbish assisted our clients in the Lower Mainland recycle over 53 tonnes of drywall — which is an increase of nearly 60% over 2012. We’ve helped haul drywall and construction waste from residential, commercial, construction and demolition properties throughout the Greater Vancouver area.

After removing the drywall, we work with New West Gypsum Recycling Ltd., who are the world leaders in the safe recycling of these materials. Since the inception of their company in 1985, their facilities have processed more than 4.5 million tonnes of gypsum! Their process involves separating the various components of the sheets, and then grinding the filtered plaster, which is eventually reincorporated into the manufacturing of new drywall panels.

We believe that small steps add up to big improvements. We’re always looking for new ways to keep recyclable materials out of our landfills, and working in conjunction with other like-minded businesses who have similar environmental mandates.

 

Paint Removal and Recycling

Often the easiest way to brighten and freshen up your space is to add a coat of paint. While it can work wonders to liven up your home or office, sometimes we find ourselves with an excess left-over, and are unsure of where/how to safely dispose of it. The BC Product Care Association website suggests always keeping in mind the BUD rule when purchasing materials:

  • B – Buy only the amount you need.
  • U – Use all the paint you buy.
  • D – Dispose of any leftover paint safely.

To cut down on waste, it’s a good idea to calculate how much you’ll need initially for your project before you begin. Most paint retailers are happy to help estimate the amount you will require, which will save money and minimize paint wastage. But regardless of how closely you estimate, often you’re still left with at least a little bit remaining. If you can’t re-purpose the paint for use in future touch-ups or other projects (in the case of lighter colours, they can sometimes be used as primers), there are environmentally mindful ways of disposing of it.

Green Coast Rubbish often helps our clients deal with removing excess materials such as paint, stain, and shellac, and diverts them to depots who specialize in their safe processing. In 2012 alone, GCR helped recycle more than 2438 litres! Many of the facilities around the Lower Mainland even offer programs where they simply give the paint away free to those who can make use of it (as long as the remaining product is properly sealed and still labeled). By being inventive about ways that we can re-purpose paint, we can make our spaces and communities more beautiful, while still protecting the earth in the process.

For more information about the types of products that can be recycled, check out the BC Product Care website. If you have questions about the types of products and waste Green Coast Rubbish can handle on behalf of your home or your business – never hesitate to drop us a line.

ReStore and Habitat for Humanity

Taking care of the environment, and helping people in our communities: these are two fundamental ideas we’ve built our company on from the start. They help us strive to reuse or recycle many unwanted materials, keeping them out of our landfills. If those materials can then be used to help local families put a roof over their heads, why wouldn’t we do everything possible to make that happen?

Because we care so much about this, we like to give shout-outs to similar minded businesses who are working hard to make a difference. One such business is ReStore, which opened it’s doors recently in North Vancouver.

ReStore is a non-profit organization that sells new and used building and home improvement materials that have been donated to them by builders and homeowners; with 100% of the money raised going toward Habitat for Humanity initiatives in the Greater Vancouver area. Run almost entirely by volunteers, ReStore/HH helps to provide modest-income families with affordable, accessible housing options (while at the same time giving some pretty sweet deals to people looking for items to complete renovation projects around their homes).

We believe in the great things that organizations like Habitat for Humanity are doing locally, so whenever possible GCR salvages usable material from the jobs we do and donates them. A recent demolition of an office on the North Shore allowed us to dismantle approximately 790 glass blocks from their walls and send them to ReStore—which could potentially translate to a resale value of thousands of dollars—toward their efforts in helping more people have homes in our communities.

Last year alone we were able to donate approximately 9 tonnes of various goods and materials to charities throughout Vancouver who can make good use of them. Check out what ReStore is doing; they are located at 126 Harbour Avenue in North Vancouver. 

A Solution for All of Your Renovation Waste

Are you renovating? If you are or are planning to, then you are going to be blessed with a HUGE amount of construction waste. Don’t just rent a bin and send it to the local landfill. I have a better solution.

This solution will allow you to sleep well at night knowing that you are not adding to the world’s massive garbage problem. Call North Vancouver based GREEN COAST RUBBISH for all of that recycling, composting, demolition and tree waste. In 2012, they diverted  76% of the waste they picked up to alternative recycling and waste recovery streams. A company with a purpose and a mission. Read more of GreenKick.ca’s blog post on us. 

Be sure to check out Michele Partridge’s GreenKick.ca for all that is green.  You’ll find tips on how to live a greener, healthier lifestyle. Thanks for the great profile and the kind words Michele!