Some examples of these newly-accepted plastics include milk bags, dry cleaning bags, newspaper/flyer bags, as well as in-store produce bags and frozen vegetable bags. The City says a comprehensive communications campaign will be introduced to educate and inform the public of the new list of acceptable plastic film materials.
City staff anticipate that approximately 3,500 additional tonnes of materials will be recycled and diverted from landfill under the new program, a two per cent increase in the amount of post-consumer material gathered through Blue Bin diversion, and a .35 increase in overall diversion.
According to city staff, the additional revenues from the sale of the film, reduced landfill costs and increased stewardship funding will offset the additional operating costs of the recycling program, resulting in annual net savings of $8,527 per year and $4,974 in 2015, based on seven months of savings.
In 2014, the City marketed 2,055 tonnes of film plastic material from the Blue Bin Recycling Program. The marketed plastic film material was mostly composed of plastic film retail shopping bags and clear plastic bags used by residential and non-residential customers for setting out excess recycling.
The expanded list of plastic film materials added to the Blue Bin include:
• milk bags
• select types of bread bags
• sandwich bags (e.g. re-sealable type bags)
• bulk food bags
• dry cleaning bags
• newspaper/flyer bags
• diaper and feminine hygiene outer bags
• fresh or frozen produce bags
• transparent recycling bags
• over-wrap from toilet paper, napkins, paper towels, water and soft drink packaging.