2020’s Top 10 Most Searched Items and What To Do With Them

Did you use our What Goes Where tool last year? In 2020, Township residents searched over 60,000 items in our What Goes Where tool!

Whether it was something accepted in curbside programs or an item that needed to be dropped off, it appears Township residents are committed to responsibly managing their waste. We’ve included the top 10 most searched items of 2020 below, including how to responsibly recycle or dispose of them.

10. Shredded Paper

Shredded paper is accepted as part of the Township’s curbside recycling program. Simply place your shredded paper in a paper bag before setting it out in your yellow bag come collection day. Have larger amounts of shredded paper? Use a paper ‘yard trimming’ bag and write ‘shredded paper’ on it, setting it out next to your blue box on collection day. Plastic bags containing shredded paper are not accepted.

9. Tires

Tires fall under a provincial extended producer responsibility program managed by Tire Stewardship BC. Tire Stewardship BC partners with several local retailers to accept tires for free recycling year-round. Visit Tire Stewardship BC for the most up to date list of participating locations.

Learn more about Extended Producer Responsibility programs at Take it Back.

8. Broken Glass and Ceramics

Broken glass and ceramics should be placed in a box or rigid container before placing them in your garbage. Ceramics are not accepted in the Township’s curbside recycling program and should be donated when in good condition. When it comes to glass bottles and jars, these items are accepted for recycling in your grey box if they are intact. Although you may hear bottles and jars break when lifted into the truck, broken glass bottles and jars set out at the curb pose a safety risk for collection staff during handling and are not accepted for recycling.

7. Clothes

Most of us know good condition clothes can be donated to local thrift stores, but what about damaged clothes? Metro Vancouver’s Think Thrice campaign encourages residents to reduce, repair, or donate clothes rather than disposing as garbage. Even if the article of clothing is stained or has holes, as long as it’s clean, it can be donated and reused or recycled. Find repair tips and donation options for damaged clothing via Think Thrice.

6. Dishwasher

Did you upgrade your dishwasher last year? It looks like some residents did! If you receive municipal garbage collection, dishwashers are accepted as part of the Large Item Pick Up program. Eligible properties can have up to four large items picked up by appointment per calendar year. Pick up requests can be made at tol.ca/lipu or by calling Sierra Waste at 604-530-3939. If you don’t receive municipal garbage collection dishwashers are another Extended Producer Responsibility item with the Major Appliance Recycling Roundtable responsible for establishing collection sites. See marrbc.ca for collection locations.

5. Car Seat

In a growing community, car seats are a common household item. Unfortunately recycling options are limited due to a car seat’s mix of fabric, metal, plastic, and foam. Car seats are accepted for disposal as garbage as part of the Large Item Pick-Up Program.

4. Styrofoam

Did you know Metro Vancouver banned expanded polystyrene packaging from garbage in 2018? Expanded polystyrene packaging (the block type found around electronics and appliances) must be taken to a participating depot for recycling. For Styrofoam meat trays and take-out containers, this type of Styrofoam is also accepted for recycling at depots, with disposal as garbage still acceptable for those unable to drop them off for recycling. The next time you take your refundable beverage containers in, why not take your Styrofoam as well?

3. Paints, Solvents, and Stains

It looks like many residents took on a home improvement project last year! Paints, solvents, and stains fall under another Extended Producer Responsibility program managed by Product Care Recycling. Paint is accepted at depots that have partnered with Product Care, with some also participating in their PaintShare program for leftover paint. See Product Care Recycling for depot locations including a list of depots participating in the PaintShare program.

2. Pots and Pans

Did you decide to upgrade your kitchen utensils after cooking more meals at home last year? Pots and pans should be donated when in good condition and may be accepted by scrap metal retailers for recycling. Pots, pans, and other scrap metal items are not accepted in curbside recycling bins. The Township’s curbside recycling program is a member of Recycle BC, the provincial steward responsible for residential packaging and paper products. Since scrap metal items are not packaging, they are not accepted in curbside recycling bins.

1. Motor oil

Not surprisingly, motor oil was the most searched item in 2020. With nearly 2,200 searches it’s clear residents are a little uncertain what to do with old oil and oil filters. Motor oil is accepted for recycling at depots throughout the Lower Mainland through another provincial stewardship program managed by the BC Used Oil Management Association (BCUOMA). BCUOMA is responsible for establishing collection sites throughout the province to provide BC residents a way to safely dispose of their oil. While drop-off locations are limited, several remain within in a short drive of the Township. Consider dropping off old oil on your way to or from work or while running other errands in the region. Find drop-off locations and learn more by visiting BCUsedOil.com.

Engineering Division