Simply recycling is not so simple

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The RM of Gimli lists refuse and recyclables on their website at www.gimli.ca.

There you will find a visual list of items that are and are not accepted as part of the local recycling program.

If in doubt, you can check this guide online or alternatively, you can print it our or pick up a physical copy at the RM office for a reference. Another handy checkpoint is the website www.simplyrecycle.caand www.recycleeverywhere.ca.

What is not simple is what is excluded. For instance, it is easy to mistake aluminum foil pie plates as recyclable when they are not, since aluminum drink cans are recyclable.

Also, for some reason, plastic bags are often marked with the triangle for recycling but are not included as recyclables. The one exception that may come as a surprise to many people in the Interlake is bread bags, which are recyclable, according to RM of Gimli public works’ staff.

Paper towels and napkins, though they are paper, are not recyclable. Neither are paper cups, like Tim Horton’s coffee cups and similar materials because they are wax-coated. The lids, however, are marked as recyclable, with a 6 inside the triangle.

Please note, the RM of Gimli does not however, accept black plastics in recycling, even though they too may be marked with the recycling triangle as recyclable material.

Single-use plastics, including cellophane and plastic bags of various qualities are not for the recycle bin, but can often be reused for pet pickup, lunches, painting projects or garbage before the landfill.

Remember, how little time it takes for one person to fill a room with disposable plastic water bottles. An investment in a reusable steel container is a long-term choice that doesn’t degrade into a carcinogenic beverage in the sun.

Staff at the public works office noted that their recycling contract is with the city of Winnipeg. A Stonewall company performs pick up and all materials are shipped directly to the city for sorting.

It is imperative that residents rinse or clean all recyclables before placing them into their bins. Food waste can contaminate all recyclables.

The recycling everywhere website also explains, “A recycling collection bin or yard bin picked up by a hauler with several non-transparent bags in it can be deemed contaminated, causing the entire bins’ contents to be sent to the landfill.”

For more information, contact the RM of Gimli public works.

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