Update: City council unanimously approved the e-waste pilot program at it’s June 7 meeting.
Lethbridge city council is looking at implementing a pilot program for toxic and e-waste round-up events for residents. A recommendation from the economic standing policy committee will be voted on at council’s June 7 meeting. It would approve up to three roundup events per year. The pilot program would last a year, then administration would report back to council with outcomes and recommendations on operating budget requirements, if needed.
The Waste & Recycling Utility, which provides waste management services for Lethbridge, provided toxic and e-waste roundups in the past, but it was discontinued after a dedicated public drop off area opened at the waste and recycling centre in 2018.
“Traditionally the focus of waste management systems has been collection and waste disposal,” reads the city staff report on the recommendation. “The new focus is on environmentally sustainable waste management practices with focus on waste prevention and waste diversion.”
The staff reports said there was no engagement with the public to determine the desire for the program, but various departments were consulted to estimate costs for the change in service.
The cost of each roundup event is estimated at $30,000, according to the report. This includes staff, equipment and material processing fees. Utility cost increases required for the service would be about $0.0625 per dwelling unit each month.
“The WRU can provide up to three events per year at no cost assuming savings from disposal cost at the WRC,” the staff report says. “This could be confirmed after one year of operations.”