The yellow bin system will remain in place in the Elk Valley to compliment the new recycling depot. File Photo

New recycling depot set to open in the Elk Valley

The depot will accept 76 additional recyclable items

The RDEK will be officially opening its newest Recycle BC Depot at the Fernie Transfer Station next Monday, opening up dozens of new recycling opportunities for residents and visitors.

“The new Recycle BC Depot at the Fernie Transfer Station provides residents with the ability to recycle a wide range of items that are not accepted in the local yellow bin program or Fernie’s curbside recycling,” says RDEK Environmental Services Manager Kevin Paterson.

Some of the items that will be accepted at the new Depot include Styrofoam, #7 plastics, milk substitutes, zippered bags like Ziplocs and pet food bags, aerosol cans and more.

And, while being able to recycle over 76 additional items at the Recycle BC Depot provides residents with a host of new options to reduce their overall waste, the benefit doesn’t end there.

“Because we are operating a regulated Recycle BC Depot, we are classified as a collector,” explains Paterson. “That means every tonne of product the RDEK collects at this depot, we will be compensated by Recycle BC, which will save tax dollars for the public.”

By contrast, the RDEK has to pay for every tonne of recyclables collected in the yellow bins.

Recycle BC – and the RDEK’s new depot – are part of an Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) program for printed paper and packaging. Many people will be familiar with some of the older EPR programs for things like tires, oil and electronics, where you pay an eco or environmental fee at the store when you buy. That fee is intended to support a system for that product to be recycled and managed through the end of its life. This packaging EPR program is managed by Recycle BC and the eco-fees are charged directly to the producers rather than consumers.

“The Recycle BC Program requires depots to be run with very specific guidelines, including gated and staffed locations and a bit more separation of materials,” explains Paterson. “Our existing yellow bin program does not meet their program specifications, so we have had to get creative as we are committed to increasing recycling opportunities for our residents without costing taxpayers extra.”

The yellow bin system remains in place; however, it only accepts paper, cardboard, tin/aluminum cans, grocery/shopping bags and plastics #1-#6.

“It is very important to understand is that this is a new option and a totally separate program from the yellow bin system or City of Fernie curbside recycling. People will have to use the Recycle BC Depot at the Transfer Station if they want to access these new recycling opportunities as we do not have access to the same markets through our yellow bin system,” stresses Paterson.

The new depot will have separate bins for:

• Paper/cardboard

• Containers (metal, plastic, lids, hot/cold beverage, cartons)

• Styrofoam – both white and printed/coloured

• Flexible plastic packaging

• Plastic bags and overwrap

• Glass

“We have had the yellow bin system for over 20 years, so there will be an adjustment for users the first few times at the site; however, we’ve found after people visit the site once or twice, they start to develop a system that works for them and we’ve had really good feedback overall,” adds Paterson.

The RDEK will be launching a comprehensive education campaign over the next few weeks to provide information on all aspects of the new Depot system and other recycling opportunities in the region.

You can access tips, download copies of brochures, ask questions, and read through the Q&As on

The Recycle BC Depot will open at the Fernie Transfer Station at 6001 Highway 3 on Monday, February 3. Depots will be opened at the Elkford Transfer Station on February 18 and Sparwood Transfer Station on March 2.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Annual Elk Valley Pride Festival paints the town rainbow

Festivities began with a spirited Pride Bike Parade and flag raising ceremony

City of Fernie installs new railway safety decals

Part of Rail Safety Week, the initiative promotes railway safety at one of Fernie’s busy crossings

MP Morrison faults federal Throne Speech as new Parliament session begins

Kootenay-Columbia representative criticizes a lack of focus on jobs, support for resource sector

Sparwood’s Business Scarecrow Competition kicks off

All Sparwood businesses are encouraged to get involved in the annual festivity

New affordable homes coming to Fernie

14 townhouse units and a 35 unit apartment is under construction on Fourth Avenue

BC Liberal Leader talks drug addiction in the Lower Mainland

Drug addiction and public safety a top priority says Andrew Wilkinson

Pandemic derails CP Holiday Train

Canadian Pacific will work to get donations to food banks while also producing an online music concert

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Interior Health reports five new COVID-19 cases

Across the region, 34 cases are active

Vanderhoof’s Brian Frenkel takes on top job in tough times

We can get through this, new local government leader says

Local councils important, Horgan says as municipal conference ends

B.C. NDP leader says ‘speed dating’ vital, online or in person

Penticton woman sentenced to one year in prison for manslaughter of teen boyfriend

Kiera Bourque, 24, was sentenced for manslaughter in the 2017 death of Penticton’s Devon Blackmore

B.C. Green leader says NDP abandoning environmental plan

Horgan’s claim of unstable government false, Furstenau says

Most Read