July 21st, 2014

How BC’s new Multi Material Recycling Program works (and why it matters even if you DON’T live in BC!)

On May 19th, 2014, an ambitious new recycling stewardship program was launched in BC, intended to deal with paper and packaging waste, but incorporating a whole lot more. Traditionally, municipalities were responsible for collecting recycling through taxpayer-funded pickup services, then sold the materials to recover costs.

Now, in participating municipalities province-wide, Multi Material BC will be in charge of collecting, processing and selling materials from Blue Box recycling programs.

So how does the funding work? Who processes the waste and where does the money go? We have designed the info graphic below to help answer some of those questions.

MMBC is not without its critics. Many maintain that there was not enough consultation with business before implementation, and that it does not reward stewards or manufacturers who go above and beyond in recycling behaviour or recyclable design.

The province of BC has been a leader in implementing such Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) programs, and we now have 18 similar industry-funded solutions for everything from tires to lights, used oil, batteries and smoke alarms. Other provinces are watching, so stay tuned and see how MMBC evolves.

We’ll be watching to help make sure it’s the REAL Green Deal!

In the meantime, for London Drugs customers, in BC and elsewhere, we are continuing our in-store recycling services, including our industry-leading Bring back the Pack Program.

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