Raven Recycling to reopen drop off recycling bins

Raven Recycling has announced that it will reopen its public drop-off service. The opening is expected in mid-May, said executive director Joy Snyder yesterday.

Raven Recycling has announced that it will reopen its public drop-off service.

The opening is expected in mid-May, said executive director Joy Snyder yesterday.

The society’s board voted to reopen the service at a meeting Tuesday evening.

“The board was pretty keen to reopen,” said Snyder. “If it looked any possible way that they could do it, they wanted to do it.”

Raven shut the bins in October because it could no longer afford to process and ship non-refundable recyclable materials. Other aspects of the society’s operations continued.

This week’s announcement comes after both the Yukon government and the City of Whitehorse announced new measures to aid Raven and private recycler P&M.

The Yukon government promised up to $573,000 to support the processors in 2015/2016, two and a half times what was provided in the past year.

The City of Whitehorse committed to an additional $57,300 in diversion credits to recyclers this year, beyond its regular $150,000 funding cap for that program.

In addition, it has advanced the $150,000 set aside for 2016 diversion credits.

The Yukon government also chipped in $68,000 to ship out 400 tonnes of stockpiled mixed plastics, and the city promised to deal with stockpiled mixed paper through its recycling program.

These measures help cover operations costs for now, but are not a long-term solution, said Snyder.

The society is still waiting on big changes to the territory’s recycling system that are still coming down the pipe. Those include a promised city-wide curbside recycling program and new revenues from returnable recyclable products, including beverage containers, tires and electronics.

“It’s sort of risky to open at this time, right?” said Snyder. “We don’t know really what’s going to happen.”

The board weighed that financial risk against its desire to get the drop-off service back up and running, said Snyder.

“We’ve certainly heard from lots of members of the public that they would like to see this happen. We really appreciate the public’s support, because I know they’ve written letters, and phoned and whatnot. So that’s nice. It worked!”

The society plans to review the decision in December, based on what sustainable revenue sources for recycling have been established by then.

Raven is grateful for the support of the public as well as the territorial and municipal governments, said Snyder.

“Both governments really worked hard, the Yukon government and the city, to find short-term solutions so we could reopen. And then I think it really got recycling on the radar as well, for them to come up with some longer-term solutions.”

Contact Jacqueline Ronson at

jronson@yukon-news.com

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