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Recycling in Manitoba

Manitobans generate over 900,000 Tonnes of waste annually. High levels of waste generation is an indication of inefficient production and consumption of goods and services leading to unnecessary depletion of valuable resources. The costs to local governments and businesses to manage the quantities and types of waste produced are increasing. The hazardous nature of much of this waste increases the risk to environmental and human health.

 

Over the past decade, Manitoba has implemented new regulations and policies to support resource recovery (recycling) efforts and introduced a waste disposal levy to encourage the diversion of waste from its landfills.

 

Established in 2009, Manitobas Waste Reduction and Recycling Support (WRARS) Landfill Levy continues to encourage local governments and businesses to improve waste recycling systems.

Green Manitoba's Response

To support improved recycling systems province-wide, Green Manitoba works in co-operation with Manitoba Conservation's Pollution Prevention Branch, industry stewards, municipalities, community councils and First Nations, environmental non-government organizations (ENGOs) and consumer groups.

 

Manitoba’s extended producer responsibility (EPR) program currently being developed adheres to the “polluter pays” principle by shifting the waste management burden from taxpayers to producers and consumers. The financial implications of this model promote a more efficient and sustainable use of resources. The intent is to capitalize on the opportunities for economic growth and community vitality available through effective management practices applied to all waste streams.

 

Thirteen producer responsibility programs have now been approved to manage a comprehensive list of waste products, including:

 

  • Packaging and Printed Paper      
  • Tires
  • Lead-acid Batteries
  • Agriculture Chemical  Containers
  • Oil, Containers and Filters
  • Automotive Anti-Freeze
  • Rechargeable Batteries
  • Single-use Batteries
  • Household Hazardous Products (Corrosives, Solvents)
  • Fluorescent Lights and Tubes
  • Paint
  • Domestic Pesticides
  • Pharmaceuticals / Sharps and Syringes
  • Electronic Equipment (Computers and TVs)
  • Mercury-containing Thermostats
 

 

In addition, new program efforts to improve the diversion of organic waste to composting operations and to recover construction and demolition (C&D) waste as well as industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) waste are under development.

 

In practice, Green Manitoba’s efforts will result in:

  • Community input and support for the development of effective programs and practices;
  • Employment and wealth-creation opportunities related to sustainable waste management practices and value-added partnerships benefiting communities and other participants;
  • Industry stewards implementing EPR programs consistent with Manitoba principles, directions and targets;
  • Development of the core processes and tools required for Green Manitoba to monitor and report on program performance;
  • Improved awareness and education campaigns aimed at promoting the 4R waste management hierarchy (reduce/reuse/recycle/recover);
  • Creation of new partnerships and relationships among stakeholders based on aligned interests and goals;
  • Improved waste management information databases and expertise.