2016 Waste Minimization Awards
The 21st annual Saskatchewan Waste Minimization Awards ceremony was held on May 18 in Saskatoon as part of SWRC's ReForum conference. Thanks to SaskTel for sponsoring the awards.
On hand to assist with the awards presentations was David Buckingham, MLA Saskatoon Westview and Kevin Adair, SaskTel's Vice President Customer Services – Operations.
Individual: Lynn Needham
Lynn is Maple Creek’s Manager of Environmental Services, and since starting with the position in 2015 he has completely transformed the Town’s landfill, increasing its life expectancy from 10 years to 65 years.
Working with Town Council, Lynn has championed:
-Single stream recycling for residential and commercial, reducing landfill waste by 52%.
-The introduction of landfill tipping fees to encourage users to more closely consider alternative options.
-Rigorous inspections of private vehicles at the landfill gate, redirecting residents to divert recyclable materials.
-Salvaging quality reusable household items
-Enforcing stricter requirements on the sorting of demolition debris.
-Educating children on the importance of waste reduction and recycling. One project involved repurposing waste lumber and paint to build birdhouses with the children.
-Mulching & composting garden waste, creating compost for local gardeners.
Lynn has completely transformed the look and feel of the landfill. Where once there was unmonitored dumping, there are now orderly systems for reuse, recycling, and proper waste disposal. The work that Lynn has done to present a clean, appealing and professional new look for the landfill helps encourage the public to respect it and to consider their waste disposal habits. His work at the Maple Creek landfill is an inspiration; a demonstration of what can be achieved through passion, hard work and innovation.
Small Business: Alchemy Clothing & Salon
Alchemy is a busy shop located in the heart of Saskatoon, which employs 15 staff. Waste reduction has always been an important initiative for owner Melissa Squire.
The entire shop is part of the Green Circle Salon program – an organization that assists salons in recycling and repurposing hair, foils, colour-tubes, papers and plastics as well as diverting excess hair chemicals from going down the drain.
The shop and all events hosted by the shop are Bullfrog Powered, meaning that all of the energy used by the shop comes from clean, renewable sources.
Melissa is coming very close to reaching her goal of using only sustainable fabrics including ethically sourced bamboo cotton. Instead of using leather or fake leather, she incorporates upcycled bike and car tires into many of her designs.
All products sold in Alchemy are evaluated for their environmental impact, packaging, ingredients, and their corporate social responsibility.
Melissa and her team are truly innovative and are continuously evolving what we should come to expect from our fashion designers, as well as the hair and beauty industry.
Corporation: Titan Carbon Smart Technologies
Titan is Saskatchewan’s largest biomass recycler. Titan’s bio-refinery diverts wood and organic waste from landfills, processes that waste into high quality products, and sequesters carbon through the production of biochar. Established in 2006, Titan’s mission is to develop ways to produce sources of clean energy and carbon-smart products.
Titan is known in the industry as a ‘bio-recycler’, the materials they divert and the products they create have expanded over the past decade but their mission of turning underutilized biomass into value-added products has continued. Some of the products created include heating briquettes, absorbents, compost, biochar and syngas.
In 2016 Titan processed and re-purposed more than 2,450,000 kg of post-consumer wood waste, 1,100,000 kg of green waste, and over 4,300,000 kg of treated wood
Titan is focused on using leading edge environmental technology processes to produce value-added products from underutilized biomass resources.
Non-profit organization: Electronic Products Recycling Association -- Saskatchewan
In the fall of 2016, EPRA Saskatchewan teamed up with the Saskatchewan Science Centre to bring the Recycle My Electronics Education Event to the province. The event introduced elementary school-aged youth to the importance of e-recycling, empowering them to make a difference within their own homes and communities.
At the end of the exhibit, students were asked to audit their homes to discover what end-of-life electronics their family had which were ready for recycling. Teachers were also provided with access to online education modules.
Since 2007 EPRA has operated Saskatchewan’s electronic products recycling program for consumers and businesses, collecting 465,000 electronic devices every year.
Municipality: Town of Kindersley
Since the beginning of 2015, the Town of Kindersley has made significant and lasting enhancements to the operation of the Kindersley Waste and Recycle Centre, and has implemented curbside recycle collection service. Those two steps have produced dramatic results in waste minimization for the Town.
It all started with a spark. Literally.
A widely publicized fire at the Kindersley landfill in October 2013 resulted in in a short-term local state of emergency, but also a long term focus on innovation, environmental stewardship, and long-term sustainability of the Town’s waste collection services.
In January 2015, the Town of Kindersley launched a single-stream curbside recycling collection program for all residents, replacing the previous recycling drop-off locations. This change has resulted in a 66% increase in the volume of recyclables collected in the city over the past two years.
In late 2014, the Town’s waste site was redesigned to encourage residents to change their disposal habits even further. Landfill fees were raised, loads are now checked for content, and there are segregated areas to divert or repurpose materials. The Town also started curbside compost collection in May 2015 on a subscription basis.
An emergency may have sparked these changes, but it is the power of the passionate and dedicated staff at the Town of Kindersley that has created culture of sustainable design and waste prevention that we know will last for generations
Thanks to SaskTel for their support of the Saskatchewan Waste Minimization Awards.