P&M readies for recycling influx

P&M Recycling is bracing itself for the larger volumes that will surely be coming its way after Raven Recycling ends its free public drop off service after Oct. 15.

P&M Recycling is bracing itself for the larger volumes that will surely be coming its way after Raven Recycling ends its free public drop off service after Oct. 15.

“I guess we just have to prepare for what’s about to come,” said P&M owner Pat McInroy.

Raven announced last week that it will shut the drop-off service because government support for recycling does not cover the costs of processing and shipping out materials. It will continue to offer a bottle return service and other programs.

P&M has dealt with influxes before when Raven has shut for short periods of time, like when they renovated the drop off area two years ago, said McInroy.

But this is the first time the closure has been indefinite.

“It’s not that we haven’t seen the volume come. This time I think we’ll be a little better prepared for it, have adequate number of staff,” he said.

“I don’t think every customer that Raven has is just going to switch over, I don’t think that that’s going to happen at all, but I do think we’ll see quite a bit more volume.”

Raven and P&M are the only recycling processors in the Yukon, and Raven currently handles about three quarters of the total volume.

P&M processes the recycling that lands at the bins at the dump, as well as that collected by the Yukon Blue Bin Recycling Society.

With Raven’s popular drop-off service shut down, it is likely that more recyclables will end up at the landfill until a solution is reached. That will be a setback in the Yukon and City of Whitehorse’s goal to divert 50 per cent of waste from the landfill by 2015.

McInroy agreed that payment for recycling services could use a boost.

Right now, processors get a $150 diversion credit from Yukon and Whitehorse per tonne of material they ship out.

They sell that material to recyclers, but prices plummeted in the commodities crash of 2008, making it a losing game for a lot of products.

Processors also get paid for collecting beverage containers where the government collects a deposit at the time of purchase.

But the fee he gets for processing that material hasn’t changed in 15 years, said McInroy.

“It’s a tough game. It’s tough to make everyone happy with this. But we certainly would appreciate a bit of a raise here. We’re still working on 1999 dollars, basically.”

The Yukon government is currently consulting on proposed changes to those rules that would see the fee go up by 5 cents a container, and could double the payment to the processor.

Raven said those changes have not come soon enough to keep it afloat.

McInroy said he does his best to balance money-losing materials with ones that bring in income.

“You can’t always win on every product. We try to balance it off. I’m not going to pretend that it doesn’t hurt sometimes to send some of this stuff out, and actually it does, but we have to balance that off against some of the more valuable products and try to get the loads out there at the least amount of cost to us.”

P&M also has a $200,000 machine that processes plastic into oil, and that helps get rid of some of the money-losing plastics.

The machine was paid for by the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency as part of an experiment to see if the technology would work in a cold climate.

McInroy not only saves on the costs of processing and shipping those plastics, but the resulting oil helps heat his downtown warehouse.

But the machine barely puts a dent in the plastic this territory uses, he said.

“I’m not going to ever say anything bad about the plastic-to-oil machine, but I think people would be a little shocked to know that we can only do 250 kilograms a day, and that’s with that machine running 24 hours per day,” said McInroy.

“We would need a machine that’s basically 12 to 15 times bigger than what we have, and that would probably take care of what Raven and myself produce, but it’s just a fraction of what’s out there.”

Contact Jacqueline Ronson at jronson@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

A high streamflow advisory has been issued for the Nordenskiold and Klondike Rivers on May 11. Photo by Yukon Protective Services
Nordenskiold, Klondike rivers see rising water levels; advisory issued

Following the river-ice breakup, flows have continued to rise on Nordenskiold and Klondike River systems, said a release by the Emergency Measures Organization.

Mike Thomas/Yukon News file
A fox runs across the street at Main Street and Third Avenue.
A new project seeks to learn more about Whitehorse fox populations

A new project to monitor and improve the understanding of urban foxes living in Whitehorse will begin this year

The Fireweed Market in Shipyards Park will open on May 13. Joel Krahn/Yukon News
Whitehorse’s Fireweed Market opens May 13

The Fireweed Market will return with ‘exciting’ new and returning vendors

Ron Rousseau holds a sign saying ‘It’s time for a cultural shift’ during the Yukoners: Raise Your Voice Against Misogyny rally on May 11. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Protest held to condemn Yukon Party MLAs’ texts

A rally was held outside of legislature to condemn the inappropriate texts messages of Yukon Party MLAs Stacey Hassard and Wade Istchenko.

XX
WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World for May 12, 2021.… Continue reading

Drilling at Northern Tiger’s 3Ace gold project in 2011. Randi Newton argues that mining in the territory can be reshaped. (Yukon government/file)
Editorial: There’s momentum for mining reform

CPAWS’ Randi Newton argues that the territory’s mining legislations need a substantial overhaul

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)
KDFN business park subdivision approved

Will mean more commercial industrial land available in Whitehorse

Main Street in Whitehorse on May 4. Whitehorse city council has passed the first two readings of a bylaw to allow pop-up patios in city parking spaces. Third reading will come forward later in May. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Whitehorse council pursuing restaurant patio possibilities

Council passes first two readings for new patio bylaw

Neil Hartling, the Tourism Industry Association of the Yukon president, left, said the new self-isolation guidelines for the Yukon are a ‘ray of hope’ for tourism operators. (Ian Stewart/Yukon News file)
Yukon tourism operators prepared for ‘very poor summer’ even with relaxed border rules

Toursim industry responds to new guidelines allowing fully vaccinated individuals to skip mandatory self-isolation.

A lawsuit has been filed detailing the resignation of a former Yukon government mine engineer. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
A year after resigning, former chief mine engineer sues Yukon government

Paul Christman alleges a hostile work environment and circumvention of his authority led him to quit

Former Liberal MLA Pauline Frost speaks to reporters outside the courthouse on April 19. One of the voters accused of casting an invalid vote has been granted intervenor status in the lawsuit Frost filed last month. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Voters named in Pauline Frost election lawsuit ask to join court proceedings

The judge granted Christopher Schafer intervenor status

Haley Ritchie/Yukon News file
File photo of the legislative assembly. The previous spring sitting began on March 4 but was interrupted due to the election.
Throne speech kicks off short spring legislature sitting

The government will now need to pass the budget.

Most Read