RDN says proposed bylaws will help region reach target of 90 per cent waste diversion

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The Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) is asking the public to provide feedback on two proposed solid waste bylaws— the Mandatory Waste Source Separation bylaw and the Waste Hauler Licensing bylaw. 

The RDN said the goal of both is to divert more recyclable and organic material generated by multi-family buildings and the institutional and commercial sectors.

Once implemented, the two bylaws will provide more recycling opportunities for local haulers and encourage the development of local recycling markets. The bylaws will also help preserve the remaining 22-year lifespan of the regional landfill, according to a media release from the RDN.

“Our region has one of the highest rates of waste diversion in the province thanks to the commitment of residents to recycling,” said Tyler Brown, RDN chair. 

“The new bylaws will further help us reach our target of 90 per cent diversion of waste from the landfill by 2029 by providing tangible incentives to waste haulers and ensuring that businesses, institutions and all residents have an on-site container system to separate their waste into organics, recycling and garbage for collection.”

The Mandatory Waste Source Separation bylaw will utilize the RDN’s residential three-stream system of recyclables, organics and garbage for all businesses and multi-family dwellings. Collection can be done by an RDN licensed hauler, or businesses can choose to haul their own waste.

The Waste Hauler Licensing bylaw will offer RDN licensed haulers lower tipping fees to make the waste industry more competitive and enable them to offer lower rates to residents. A disposal levy on waste that is landfilled or incinerated will also be instituted to encourage the diversion of as much recyclable and compostable material as possible while discouraging waste being shipped out of the region to disposal sites that do not have the same diversion goals.

The approval to develop these two bylaws as part of the RDN’s Solid Waste Management Plan was granted by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy in 2020. Stakeholders, including businesses, residents and local municipalities, as well as First Nations communities, will be engaged in the feedback process.

In addition to collecting online feedback, the RDN said it will host public webinars on Aug. 19 and Sept. 9 at 10 a.m., as well as private presentations for interested groups. 

The online feedback form, draft bylaws, fact sheets, project update sign up, Q&A and details on how to register for the webinars are available on the Get Involved project webpage

The RDN said feedback received by Oct. 1 will be included in the final bylaw submission to the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy later this year.

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