A downtown bottle recycling depot could be coming to Yellowknife, after MLA Rylund Johnson voiced concerns about residents struggling to access the current facility.
The Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, Shane Thompson says he is largely supportive of the plan and said work on the technical aspects of it has already begun.
MLA for Yellowknife North Rylund Johnson says this is not the first time he has brought the issue to the GNWT. Back then, the idea received broad support from ENR, but nothing was done, says Johnson.
“I am not even asking for a fully staffed second location, just a satellite station that feeds into the main one,” he said in the Legislative Assembly on Thursday. “Surely, there is such a way to extend this drop and-go service to an area downtown for our elderly, disabled, and those with mobility issues.”
Johnson says he commonly sees residents walking with bags of bottles across town to the current recycling depot off of Old Airport Road.
He is proposing an automatic bottle depositing station, which wouldn’t have to be staffed but would still give people cash back for returning bottles.
“Our beverage recycling program is one of the best in the country,” said Johnson. “We have extremely high rates of return, and it’s a model for success.”
The tenders for the depots were last renewed in July 2020, and they will expire July 31, 2022.
Thompson says work towards implementing an automatic bottle deposit station could be ready for when the tender is set to expire in 2022.