Celebrating Saskatchewan Waste Reducers -

2009 Waste Minimization Awards

The Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council hosted Saskatchewan's 14th Waste Minimization Awards ceremony on March 25th at 7:30 p.m. at the Ramada Hotel in Regina.

"The Awards recognize waste minimization leadership by Saskatchewan individuals, municipalities and partnerships for 2009," said Bert Weichel, Chairperson of the Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council. "Their actions clearly demonstrate how we, as individuals, groups or industry can have an impact that helps to reduce the amount of waste going into our landfills."

Awards were presented by Hon. Nancy Heppner, Minister of Environment, along with Bert Weichel, Chair of the SWRC.

The Individual award recognizes those whose initiative and dedication have impacted waste reduction in their communities, workplaces or government. The 2009 recipient is Ken Homenick. Ken has been Director of Operations of SARCAN Recycling for 19 years. Ken has been a key factor in SARCAN's success. He has helped it reach the point where it can handle the 337 million beverage containers that were returned last year. He's expanded into different products: milk containers, paint, and electronics, keeping more materials out of landfill and creating employment for people of all abilities.

Ken has always been generous with his time and his advice, both to those new to the field and those who've been around for a while. He's been instrumental in helping SARC members develop their recycling programs and has increased recycling opportunities for the whole province.

 Ken Homenick
 Ken Homenick and Nancy Heppner..
 The 2009 Municipal Award was given to the City of Saskatoon for its Composting programs. Saskatoon established a permanent depot in 2006 and citizens dropped off 1200 tonnes of materials for composting. A second depot was added in 2007 and collection increased to 3000 tonnes. This improved to 4200 tonnes in 2008. In 2009, Saskatoon added non-elm wood and branches to its acceptable materials. Response was overwhelming, with over 26,000 vehicles dropping off 17,500 tonnes of materials. Another 530 tonnes were collected through the city's subscription curbside organics program. Saskatoon has had great success in diverting organics from landfill and has big plans to expand in the near future.
 Kelly Goyer
 Nancy Heppner with Kelly Goyer of the City of Saskatoon Environmental Services.

The 2009 Partnership award recipients are Saskatoon Public Schools, Waste Management and Saskatoon Curbside Recycling for their expanded recycling program. Saskatoon Public Schools is committed to operating its schools in an environmentally responsible way. At the beginning of 2009, most of the schools only had paper recycling programs. Waste Management approached them to see if they could make expanded recycling work. In conjunction with Saskatoon Curbside Recycling, they tried a two-month pilot project in six schools to collect glass, tin, plastic, paper and cardboard.

Initial results were encouraging and costs proved to be reasonable, so Saskatoon Public Schools agreed to expand the program to all its schools and offices. The program will be fully operational by the end of April 2010. So far, the program has diverted 24,000 kg of materials from the schools. Congratulations to all the partners in this initiative.

 Partnerships award
 Randy Holfeld, SPSD, Jason Bourner, Waste Management, Nancy Heppner, and Dwight Grayston, Saskatoon Curbside Recycling.

All of the winners demonstrate a strong commitment to waste minimization and have made our province a better place to live. We congratulate them!