The Lacombe Regional Waste Services Commission is beginning a new recycling program to help keep mattresses out of landfills.
The new program is set to begin on Oct. 19 to a $36,500 from Dow Canada.
“At Dow, we’re passionate about creating sustainable solutions in the communities where we operate,” said Srikanta Hazra, Dow Prentiss Site Director. “We’re looking forward to collaborating with the County and the Waste Services Commission to prevent mattresses from ending up in the local landfills.”
Collection bins will be set up by Lacombe Regional Waste Services Commission (LRWSC) at all sites over the next year. LRWSC will also construct a facility at Prentiss Landfill to house mattresses.
The mattresses will be collected for free during the pilot project and then shipped to a facility in Calgary where they will be dismantled and recycled.
The dismantling and recycling does come at a cost, but for the first year of the project that cost will be covered by the Dow grant.
“Mattresses take up valuable landfill space because they aren’t able to be compacted and often get tangled up in landfill equipment,” explained Jay Hohn, LRWSC Commission manager.
Hohn added mattresses actually shorten the lifespan of landfill facilities due to their size and bulk.
With this new program, mattresses will be broken down and repurposed into new materials for new products, instead of decomposing over 80 years.
“Recycling the mattresses is a great diversionary tactic employed by the commission, and we are very appreciative of Dow Canada to fund the one-year pilot project to get us started fully,” said Hohn.
Each year, it is estimated 1,000 mattresses are discarded at the LRWSC transfer stations.
Lacombe County and LRWSC will be looking for further opportunities over the one-year pilot project to ensure “long-term financial arrangements are n place or develop a user-pay system for mattress recycling.”
LRWSC owns and operates five solid waste management facilities within the County. They have transfer sites at or near Eckville, Bentley, Alix/Mirror, Spruceville, and a transfer site and Class Three landfill at its Prentiss location.