DAILY NEWS Dec 10, 2013 11:06 AM - 0 comments

Co-operators fund Nunavut aluminum recycling program

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By: SWR Staff

The Co-operators has announced extended support for funding the Arctic Co-operatives Limited aluminum recycling program in Nunavut.

The  additional contribution of $26,000 will allow Arctic Co-operatives to expand and improve the program, which operates in 23 communities in the territory.

The new funding from The Co-operators will permit Arctic Co-operatives to expand its operation with the addition of central can crushing equipment. This equipment will allow for significant overall reduction of transportation costs. This expansion will allow Arctic Co-ops to recycle up to two million cans per year, and donate more from the recycling program to local community groups.

“Through this program, we are leading communities in the Arctic to achieve a cleaner environment and reduce consumption of a non-renewable resource,” said Bill Lyall, President of Arctic Co-operatives Limited, speaking in a November 27, 2013 statement.

A variety of local community groups are involved in coordinating the recycling program in their communities, which serves as a fundraising endeavour. For each full shipping container collected, the local community group receives $1,500 to support community benefit projects. To date, these have included Sila Rainbow, a non-profit organization focused on supporting youth in Arviat; Hall Beach Fire Department and Community College in Hall Beach; Les Petits Nanooks Day Care in Iqaluit; Kiilinik High School in Cambridge Bay; and the girls' basketball team in Baker Lake.

“The leadership shown by Arctic Co-operatives is making a real difference by recycling millions of cans that would otherwise be sent to landfills or become litter,” said Kathy Bardswick, president and CEO of The Co-operators. “We're very pleased to support this initiative to create cleaner communities while supporting local organizations throughout Nunavut.”

Prior to Arctic Co-operatives beginning its recycling program, Nunavut was the only Canadian territory or province without a formal recycling program. Since its inception in 2011, 19 sea containers containing approximately 750,000 cans have been shipped out of the territory to be recycled.

The program was created in 2011 with the help of a $40,000 donation from The Co-operators. 

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