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Nelson Leafs recycling depot receives award

A Nelson recycling center has received an award from the BC Used Oil Management Association for being outstanding in its collection efforts.

The Nelson Leafs Recycling Center picked up the accolade for the most improved depot in the province.

It had the largest percentage increase for collection of oil and antifreeze materials between 2020 and 2021.

Manager Greg St. George says getting the award is fantastic.

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“I’ve got a great staff. Everybody really works together to pitch in but it was a big task and a big challenge but we took it on very well and I’m very proud of my staff in this for sure,” St. George said in an interview with Vista Radio.

The depot at 120 Silica Street has three full-time and seven part-time casual staff.

St. George estimates their percentage increase was 75 per cent and the depot collected around 18,000 liters of oil and roughly 2,000 liters of antifreeze last year in its second full year of operation.

He believes a couple of factors led to the big increase: their catchment area getting larger as people learned about the free drop-off and area residents cleaning out their garages and sheds of used oil and antifreeze while stuck at home during the pandemic.

The recycling facility is a non-profit owned by the Nelson Leafs Hockey Society and makes donations to help the hockey team. A portion of money raised also goes to the Kootenay Lake Hospital Foundation.

St. George wants people to know they’re available to take used oil and antifreeze and their containers as well as oil filters.

“People can come down all year round and drop off anything they have and it’s free of charge. We can take all that off your hands so nothing winds up sitting in a shed or out in a backyard somewhere. This will be our third year, we’re about two-and-a-half years in, and we’re looking forward to growing even more this year,” he said.

As for top collection awards, Ernie’s Used Auto Parts in Castlegar made the list as one of the top 30. The top award went to a collection depot in Burnaby.

This was the third time the non-profit BCUOMA has given out top collector awards and the second time its given an outstanding recycling center award.

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