Solutions For Problematic Waste
Many materials, particularly those found in construction and demolition, are destined for landfill simply because we do not yet know the best way to reduce, recycle or reuse them. Diverting these problematic wastes requires new solutions, and RRFB Nova Scotia continues to search for insight and innovation in this crucial area.
But problematic waste is a household issue, as well. One of our studies has shown that if Nova Scotians could compost their pet litter and pet feces, the province would divert 10,000 tonnes of waste per year from our landfills. It’s a solution that would be simple to participate in, and it represents 3% of our 300 kg per person per year goal. RRFB continues to look for ways to reduce problematic waste.
Some materials are less commonly recycled/composted or difficult to market. They therefore represent priority materials for RRFB diversion and Business Development Programs:
- Construction and Demolition (C&D) Wastes are unwanted materials produced during construction, renovation and demolition. Materials include:
- wood (clean, engineered, painted/coated and with laminates, e.g. plywood, MDF, particle board, melamine or other wood with laminates and/or adhesives/glues, e.g. counter tops, shelving, etc);
- wallboard (clean and painted/coated);
- asphalt shingles; and
- other: flooring (carpet, vinyl, laminate, etc.), ceiling tiles, plaster, vinyl siding.
- Textiles, such as clothing, fabrics, and some carpets (the backing is more problematic to market than the fibre).
- Paper products: magazines, wax cardboard, laminated boxboard, milk cartons, Tetra Paks
- Organic materials: plastic lined boxboard (some frozen food boxes), waxed cardboard, animal waste, etc.
- Household hazardous, special wastes and their containers: disposable diapers, hazardous fluid containers (mostly plastics), motor oil containers, etc.
- Plastics less commonly recycled and/or difficult to market:
- Plastic containers numbered 3 to 7, e.g. dairy and food packaging, some automotive fluids, some cleaners, etc.
- Plastic film #4 and #2: shopping bags, packaging wrap (around toilet paper, tissue boxes, insulation wrap, etc.), dry cleaner bags, pallet wrap, etc..
- Expanded polystyrene #6 (Styrofoam™): disposable cups, food trays, foam packaging around new products, etc.
- Plastic products # 1 to 7: toys, furniture, household products (laundry baskets, buckets, etc.), electronic casings.