Recycling Alternative Newsletter: #RefuseSingleUse



Single-Use Item Ban

Recycling Alternative has been pushing this month for everyone to #RefuseSingleUse and it seems to be working! From Vancouver banning Single Use Items (SUI’s) to the styrofoam ban starting next week, from reusable ice cream containers to coffee cups, this newsletter will fill you in on everything going on with SUI’s.

There was great news earlier this month when the City of Vancouver decided to ban single-use plastic straws and Styrofoam cups after a long extensive public consultation. We are very proud to have been part of this consultation process. The ban on polystyrene foam take-out containers and foam cups will be introduced startUntitled-1ing June 1, 2019, and the ban on plastic straws, with exemptions for people with accessibility and health care needs, will be introduced starting June 1, 2019.

It is very encouraging to see Vancouver taking this bold step by passing the ban a month ago, and now the EU is considering this option as well. The single-use item ban is definitely going international and the recyclers are happy!  We are all beginning to understand very clearly the damage and the negative impact our single-use item habits are having on the planet. A&W Canada is the first North American fast food chain to eliminate plastic straws in all its branches, Canada wide. By January 2019, they will be replacing plastic straws with paper straws. Adding to that, NADA. a new zero waste concept store that is centered around waste minimization with a mission to change the way we shop for “more food” and “less packaging”. The store allows you to use your own reusable containers and bags while shopping for your groceries! If you are looking for tips and tricks on how to reduce your single-use habits, check our Facebook page for daily updates! We also encourage you to SHARE yourown alternatives with the hashtag #RefuseSingleUse. Continue reading…

Recycling Alternative Newsletter: 2017 In Review


From the desk of the Owners Louise & Robert

R&L-TruckwebAs 2017 rounds to a close, we wanted to send our heartfelt thanks out to RA’s wonderful community of clients, as well as our amazing team who work so hard to keep our engine primed and running efficiently, whether as office and admin staff, managers, dispatchers, drivers, warehouse team …. (and of course, the cats!).

On the community front, we continue to work on innovative recycling programs with our Downtown Eastside community partners United We Can, Mission Possible and the Binners Project, to provide employment opportunities to individuals with barriers.

Robert is still like a kid in a sandbox. From his custom designed and manufactured ZW trucks (2010-2015) he has now turned his attention to helping our high volume food waste clients process their organics waste on-site in 24 hours, using our composting machines.

By now, many of you will be aware that the international recycling markets have had a very rough year. Recently, the ‘China Sword’ introduced bans against all recycling materials exported to China from North America, in response to the high levels of contamination and garbage being found in these exported streams. This has dramatically affected paper and plastics markets through the last months of 2017, the next few months will give us an indication about the long-term effects.

With these challenges looming large on the horizon Continue reading…


Kimberlee Stirling – August 21, 2014

A visit to the Gordon Smith Gallery of Canadian Art in North Vancouver was on my summer to-do list, I wanted to see what happened to the 3000 Coca Cola cans contributed from Recycling Alternative to Gu Xiong’s exhibit.SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA

Gu Xiong is an artist who lives in Vancouver, he was born in China and has lived in Canada 25 years now. His art is created from personal memories and experiences as well as from current issues facing both Canada and China. Continue reading…

Press Release – New initiative aims to achieve nothing

Vancity sponsors zero-waste events to keep garbage out of landfills

July 29, 2014, Vancouver, B.C. – A new initiative called Zero Waste Events is aiming to divert up to 94 per cent of summer event waste from local landfills.

The first Zero Waste Event – Car Free Day on Commercial Drive in June – diverted 63 per cent of its waste from the landfill. This saved more than 700 kg of greenhouse gas emissions which is equivalent of keeping two cars off the road for one month.

The Vancouver Food Cart Fest has diverted more than 90 per cent of waste during the first four weekends of the festival, saving 134 large bags of waste from the landfill. The reduction in greenhouse gas emissions would be equal to taking seven cars off the road for a month. Continue reading…

Festival Season in Mid-Flight!

Here at RA we are mid-way through our busy, sunny and this year very HOT festival season.

We usually mark this halfway point with the arrival of FOLKFest in mid-July, by most Vancouverites, considered the mother of all the city’s outdoor festivals.

So far, this festival season RA has donated and/or provided trashbusting services, signage, bags and recycling stations to:

  • Sakura Days – April 5-6
  • Youth for Climate Justice Now –Earth Day celebration April 21
  • Brittania Stone Soup Festival – May 10-11 Continue reading…

Press Release – GreenHUB opens on the Southeast False Creek Flats

Recycling Alternative sets the foundation for a new centre in the collaborative economy

June 3, 2014 Vancouver, BC On June 1, Recycling Alternative took its place as the founding company of the new GreenHUB, a recycling co-location model that just opened its doors in the False Creek Flats.

Back in 2009, Louise Schwarz and Robert Weatherbe, co-founders of Recycling Alternative, conceived of a collaborative model in which Continue reading…

Youth For Climate Justice Now

Guest blog written by the students at Windermere Secondary

2014 Earth Day Y4CJN Photo 5  2014 Earth Day Y4CJN Photo 3

On April 21st, 2014, a group of students from Windermere Secondary called Y4CJN (Youth For Climate Justice Now) held their 4th annual youth-led Earth Day Celebration, which was supported by a wide variety of organizations, including Forest Ethics and Wilderness Committee. The goal of this parade and festival was to raise awareness of the change in climate that is happening now and to show that youths can make a difference. This celebration began with a parade that started from the Commercial-Broadway skytrain station and went down to Grandview Park. Many marched up Commercial Drive in costumes, with colourful banners and floats, dances, and chants focusing on the effects of climate change. After the parade, the festival took part at Grandview Park, in which a few hundred people participated in. This family friendly event had a great selection of speakers and musicians such as Buckman Coe, Andrea Reimer, and guest speaker David Suzuki. Information booths from both students and organizations were there as well as face painting and booths to buy plants.

The event had turned out very exciting and successful for yet another year and students of Windermere Secondary couldn’t be more proud of the work they have achieved. To find out more about the event, visit or contact them at [email protected], and look out for this celebration in the following years!

Recycling Alternative would like to thank Y4CJN for contributing to our blogs with their guest blog.

2014 Earth Day Y4CJN Photo 2 2014 Earth Day Y4CJN Photo 1