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Ontario continues recycling leadership with new milestone

(NC) Ontarians have always been at the forefront of the recycling industry and leaders in environmental awareness. Ontario was the first place in the world to implement a curbside Blue Box program for household recyclables. Our recycling leadership continues with a significant milestone soon to be achieved.

The Ontario Deposit Return Program (ODRP) for wine, spirits and cooler containers, funded by the LCBO, will soon mark the two billionth container returned to The Beer Store since the program began in 2007.

“The Ontario Deposit Return Program has had great success across the province. By taking an active role, the people of Ontario are not only contributing to a dynamic and innovative business climate but helping to protect the environment for present and future generations,” says Charles Sousa, Ontario's Minister of Finance.

Containers over 100 mL sold through the LCBO and Ontario winery, distillery and brewery retail stores (including glass bottles, aluminum cans, tetra pak wine cartons, plastic liquor bottles and chill packs) carry a 10- or 20-cent deposit. And they all can be returned to the Beer Store for a refund.

In 2012-13, over 302 million – or about 80 per cent - containers were returned. But that means almost 75 million containers still ended up in a landfill or the Blue Box.

While the Blue Box effectively recovers recyclable material, the deposit-return system allows for source separation of container types to ensure a higher quality of recyclable materials. For example, glass bottles are separated by colour, which ensures all glass is recycled into high-value products like new bottles or fibreglass. And it frees up space in the Blue Box, allowing municipalities to expand their recycling programs, so more packaging overall is diverted from landfills.

“Ontario consumers' participation, in both the ODRP and our program for beer containers, ensures hundreds of thousands of tonnes of glass and cardboard can be used by Ontario manufacturers, reducing the cost of manufacturing locally and its environmental impacts, while helping to create local jobs,” says Ted Moroz, President of the Beer Store.

With results like these, it's no wonder Ontario residents are such keen recyclers.

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