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.
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.
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.
Vancouver continues to move toward its goal of becoming the Greenest City by 2020. By imagining solutions and opportunities that can help residents and businesses to more effectively deal with household waste, they get closer every year. It’s estimated that nearly 35-40% of everything that we throw away is food waste; if diverted into a composting system, this adds up to a substantial amount kept out of our landfills. Which is why, starting in 2015, Metro Vancouver will be instating a ban on disposing organics and food waste into regular garbage bins.
There are huge community and environmental benefits to composting. As the food waste breaks down through natural processes, it can create valuable fertilizers that can help to enrich the soil with potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorus. It reduces overall greenhouse gas emissions and lengthens the life of our existing landfills, saving valuable space and local resources.
For some eye-opening stats on the amount of organic waste produced every day, as well for solutions on how to responsibly dispose of compastable waste visit our past blog Getting Serious About Organic Waste Reduction. If you are interested to learn more about the process that your organic waste goes through when it is processed you can check-out Part 2 of our Organic Waste Reduction blog.
Some things that can go into the compost bin:
- Fruit & vegetable scraps
- Eggshells, dairy
- Meat & fish bones
- Coffee filters & grounds
- Breads, pasta, rice
- Food soiled paper products (pizza boxes, napkins, cardboard egg cartons)
- Grass, leaves, weeds, plants
- Cooked food & grease
Some prohibited items:
- Any type of plastic (including compostable/biodegradable plastic bags)
- Rocks, soil
- Animal waste
- Wood products & lumber
- Branches bigger than 10 cm (4″) in diameter, and more than 0.5m (1.6ft) in length
These developments are very much in-line with the ideology of Green Coast Rubbish. We’ve seen the evidence firsthand of how much these compostable items can add up – in 2013 alone, we diverted 30.39 tonnes of organic material! By actively working together toward creating composting solutions with Metro Vancouver, we can all contribute to the success of this important program in our communities.
The use of Styrofoam in packaging has created an alarming amount of waste in our landfills over the past few decades. Styrofoam or EPE (expanded polystyrene) is comprised of 98% air, and is non-biodegradable—which means that it will not break down on its own for a tremendous length of time. We often work with commercial clients who deal with an immense amount of Styrofoam, with no idea of where to safely dispose of it. Every 2-3 months, Green Coast Rubbish helps our customers recycle between 50-90 yards of Styrofoam by working in conjunction with another environmentally-minded local business, Foam Only.
By compressing the EPE, Foam Only can transform this material so it can be eventually be up-cycled and used for consumer items such as picture frames and door mouldings. Foam Only’s process of breaking down the EPE is fascinating. Check out the video:
We routinely work with a number of commercial clients to address their EPE disposal and logistical needs. In a recent project, we helped to recycle nearly 90 yards of Styrofoam in a single afternoon.
When compressed, the 90 yards of Styrofoam ends up being condensed into a single solid block. Pretty amazing.
By building and maintaining this important partnership with Foam Only, we assist our clients in properly disposing of this harmful waste in more environmentally viable ways.
We live in a pretty amazing time. It seems every week, an announcement for some new technology changes the face of televisions, computers, or cell phones. Electronics are getting smaller (or in the case of TV’s, BIGGER), faster, and more equipped to handle all the tasks in our busy lives. But it comes at a cost. With a built-in obsolesce period for most gadgets being less than 2 years, people are finding themselves with basements and attics full of old TVs, printers, and VCR’s (remember those?). It all adds up to a huge amount of waste here in Canada each year.
It seems that many people are just unsure of what to do with it all. This fascinating (and somewhat alarming) StatsCan website shows the percentage of Canadians who have unwanted electronics in their households… in British Columbia, up to 31% of homes have unused televisions in their homes! Just wander down any alley in the Vancouver, and it’s likely that you’ll see abandoned electronics left beside dumpsters. Unfortunately, if they are not properly disposed of, these devices can get thrown into landfills, or sent to developing countries where they are dismantled for metal or parts; oftentimes without safety equipment. If handled improperly, the individuals doing it can be exposed to dangerous substances such as mercury, lead, and chromium—all known to be extremely toxic to humans, animals, and the environment.
We can help. Whether it’s a massive TV, old CRT monitor, or burnt out computer tower; whatever you have, we can take care of it for you. Quickly, easily and in the most environmentally conscious way possible. In 2012 alone, Green Coast Rubbish recycled 5.1 tonnes of electronics, and nearly 3 tonnes of TV’s. (Which, for those who are curious, equals roughly the same weight as an African Elephant).
After pickup, we work together with Encorp, a federally incorporated, not-for-profit association who is committed to recycling within our communities. They ensure that e-waste is properly processed, with all usable components diverted, and any remaining parts disposed of in safe and ethical ways.
You have a lot on your mind. Having these items collecting dust in your home creates both physical and mental clutter in your life. With a single call, we can handle it, and you can get back to focusing on what’s most important.
Green Coast just got bigger, better and a little more green. We are extremely fortunate to have recently hit a milestone, our 7th birthday, and to be experiencing a very busy 2013 to-date. In order to keep up with the demand for a greener and cleaner future we have expanded our carrying capabilities with an addition to our fleet-a GMC W4500 truck which will be 100% fueled by Biodiesel.
What is Biodiesel? Biodiesel is a non-toxic, biodegradable bio-fuel derived from high free fatty acid feedstock (aka. restaurant grease, vegetable oil, cooking oil, animal fats) that are put through a process called Transesterification; combining the oil with an alcohol (typically Methanol, sometimes Ethanol), and a catalyst (usually sodium hydroxide). The result of this exchange is a chemical reaction which produces glycerin and an ‘ester’ or organic compound called Biodiesel.
Thanks to the Vancouver Biodiesel Co-op, which is the Lower Mainland’s ONLY consumer source of 100% pure recycled, ASTM certified and locally sourced Biodiesel we continue to strive towards sustainability and the reduction of our Green House Gas (GHG) footprint.
Since 2010, we have been involved in the Climate Smart Program for businesses, and we have been able to measure our carbon footprint. As such have been able to plan and action ways to reduce our carbon emissions. Running our vehicles on alternate fuel sources is one of our key reduction strategies and we are ecstatic to be a member of the Vancouver Biodiesel Co-op!
Green Coast is committed and passionate about reducing our GHG Footprint, and by fueling our new carrier with Biodiesel, we are ensuring a lower vehicle emissions, therefore reducing our overall GHS footprint as we continually work towards a smaller impact on our planet and resources.
Much like our good friends at Obsession: Bikes we too think that every kid should experience the joy and excitement of riding a bike. The opportunities, the freedom, and of course the simple pleasure a bike can bring into a child’s life is unparalleled and is something that every child should experience.
With that admirable goal in mind, Obsession has established a “Bikes for Tykes” program on the North Shore of Vancouver. The Bikes for Tykes program was founded in 1987 in Naples, Florida and has since delivered close to 18,000 reconditioned bicycles to some very lucky children. With 25 chapters in the US and 3 in Canada the program has been a massive success, to say the least.
The concept of the program is simple, you donate your previously owned kids bikes to be restored to “like new” condition and then Obsession, in conjunction with other local partners, will deliver the revitalized bikes to underprivileged children across the North Shore for Christmas.
Since 2005, Obsession has delivered 100 refurbished bikes to kids on the Shore each Christmas, and Green Coast is on board to help them reach and exceed this number for 2012.
If you have a bike to donate but don’t have the means or the time to get it to Obsession, no need to worry. We will happily pick-up your child’s bike, scooter, or anything with two wheels for free and deliver it to Obsession! Just contact us and mention the Bikes for Tykes program and we’ll take care of the rest.
Help make this a memorable Christmas for children on the North Shore, because when it comes to bikes, we’re all still kids at heart!