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This article was published 13/1/2011 (3655 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Beginning this spring, Winnipeggers will have many more places to recycle their drink containers when they're away from home.
Over the next two years, a beverage industry group plans to spend millions of dollars to install thousands of bins in city parks, arenas, rec centres, public buildings and other high traffic areas.
"We've been in negotiation with the City of Winnipeg for some time and have reached agreement and will be rolling (the program) out in spring," said Ken Friesen, executive director of the Canadian Beverage Container Recycling Association (CBCRA).
He said his group also plans to negotiate with convenience stores to set up recycling bins outside those establishments.
The province has set a recycling target of 75 per cent on all beverage containers sold within Manitoba -- although, so far, it has not given industry a deadline for achieving that goal.
Currently, Manitobans recycle only about 45 per cent of the drink containers (including alcohol bottles) that they buy. However, they're more likely to recycle (up to 58 per cent) if they consume products at home. When they are away from home, their recycling drops off dramatically.
The CBCRA launched a pilot project in Portage la Prairie last fall that aimed to boost drink container collection in public places. Friesen claimed that the recovery rate for aluminum drink cans and plastic bottles in that city's rec centres soared to 95 to 98 per cent when the bins were introduced, although a Portage city official said Thursday that no hard data on recycling rates was available yet.
Darryl Drohomereski, Winnipeg's manager of solid waste services, confirmed the city's agreement with the industry association. He said Winnipeggers want to recycle drink containers, but convenience becomes an issue when they're away from home. "By greatly enhancing the availability of (recycling) containers around the city it should only help drive people to do the right thing," he said.
Drohomereski said city staff will help the CBCRA determine the best spots for the bins. Assiniboine and Kildonan parks will likely be among the first places to receive the specially designed bins.
Assiniboine Park, including the zoo and new duck pond, could likely use "well in excess of 100" of the association's recycling bins alone, Drohomereski said.
The city will likely be responsible for emptying the bins but will keep the revenue from the materials collected. On balance, the program will not cost taxpayers money, the city official said.
Mayor Sam Katz pledged during the civic election campaign to create a one-year, $85,000 pilot project that would see five recycling depots open in Winnipeg to improve the city's recycling rate.
Larry Kusch didn’t know what he wanted to do with his life until he attended a high school newspaper editor’s workshop in Regina in the summer of 1969 and listened to a university student speak glowingly about the journalism program at Carleton University in Ottawa.