Silverton’s representative on the Regional District of Central says she’s dismayed to see the village’s recycling depot slated for closure, but appreciates the financial reasoning behind the decision.
“I’m really sad to see it go,” Leah Main says. “Silverton was doing its own recycling way before the regional district started doing it as a big service. So in some senses recycling in the Slocan Valley and in the Kootenays in general started here”
Main says while she hates to lose the service, it has “definitely shown that it’s not economic.”
The cost of collecting recycling in Silverton is several times more per ton than at other depots because of its relatively limited use, she says.
Main discussed the matter with village council before consenting to let the service close. However, she is disappointed the closure will not result in an increase in hours at the New Denver depot, where residents will now have to take their recycling.
New Denver has a core depot fully subsidized by Recycle BC. It accepts paper, cardboard, all plastics, Styrofoam and other packaging, tin cans. It is open Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.
Silverton has a satellite depot that requires a $35,000 annual subsidy to run. It only takes paper and cardboard, soft plastics, and glass and is open Wednesdays and Fridays.
“Those of us who live here think there’s a very strong possibility that the New Denver depot is going to be overuses because of the closure of Silverton,” Main says.
“We did request that at least some of those hours or days be moved to New Denver, but the service as a whole voted against that because they don’t see it happening. They’ve agreed to wait and see. If we do start getting overuse there, they will consider adding hours.”
Main says some Silverton residents already take their recycling to New Denver because they are able to dispose of more things. But not everyone has easy transportation, she adds, though the villages are close by.
“It seems like we’re losing a service. We’re diminishing a service that we’re used to having access to five days a week. We’ll only have access three days a week.”