Lots of opportunities to keep good stuff out of the landfill

by Morinville News Staff

This past weekend’s Reuse It Or “Loose” It event, a volunteer-run initiative to divert materials from the landfill, was another example of why the program works.

Vehicles drove in and out throughout the day dropping off unwanted but usable items, which were then picked up by people who could make use of or repurpose those items.

While the event has wrapped up until the next one some months down the road, Roseridge Landfill has two programs that are ongoing.

The Take It Or Leave It program allows anyone with a landfill pass to leave unwanted but usable items in a designated indoor area just inside the weigh scale area, and Roseridge’s Take A Bike – Leave A Bike program allows pass holders to do the same with bicycles.

Roseridge Landfill Manager Gerrard Duffy told Morinville News the two programs makes sense.

“Diversion from the landfill extends the life of a landfill, which is crucial,” he said, adding the two programs are a way to help people in the community. “To be able to have gently used items that people have taken care of to go into their homes so they are not spending an arm and a leg when they can’t afford a kitchen table. It hasn’t cost them $700 that they could have used to get Johnny into soccer.”

Duffy said he asks people not to bring anything electrical – tools, TVs, lamps, wiring. “Anything that could cause a potential hazard for shorting when you plug it into your wall,” he explained.

Bike Program Helping Those In Need

The Landfill’s Take A Bike – Leave A Bike program, now in its second year, is located near the metals area so that unsuitable parts can go into the metals recycling area.

“We do keep it next tot he metals because there are a significant number of bikes that come in that are not worthy of riding,” he said. “We like to take those out and put them into the metal pile for recycling purposes.”

As with the general Take It Or Leave It program, the gently used bikes lined up along the rack are free for the taking, and pass holders are encouraged to leave useable bikes in the same location.

“We try to leave some spare bikes for parts, so if you need a seat or mirror or chain, you can take those, and we remove the scrap afterwards,” Duffy said. “we’re keeping a lot of bikes out of the metals recycling program and giving them back to kids.”

In its first year of operation, Duffy was able to equip a single mother’s son with a bike after the woman fled a dangerous situation in another province, leaving pretty much everything behind. A year and a bit later, and Duffy said the look on the boy’s face still makes him emotional.

“We put a bike together for the little fellow and brought it down to him, and to see the look on the mom’s face, it still brings lots of emotions to me,” he said. “that’s why we need the program.

Both programs are available from 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Mondays.

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