First drop-off at the new northeast Eco Station

If you’re like me, you probably have a few waste items taking up space in your home or garage. When I started my spring-cleaning this year, I discovered some leftover paint from redoing a room in my house, broken electronics that the kids insisted they had to have years ago, and half-empty house cleaner bottles that I never intend to use again (they left streaks despite what the advertisement claimed). These items had been taking up room for longer than I care to admit. I knew they shouldn’t be thrown in the garbage, but just hadn’t gotten around to visiting an Eco Station.

So the timing couldn’t have been better when I was invited to help open the new northeast Kennedale Eco Station. At the opening, I had the honour of being the first resident to drop off items. The facility accepted my leftover paint, broken laptop and half-empty cleaner bottles for free! It was great to know that I was doing my part to help protect Edmonton’s environment, as these items would now be properly disposed of or recycled (finally getting rid of these items opened up some much needed storage space at my house, too).

I was impressed with how convenient it is to use an Eco Station to drop-off household hazardous waste and electronics. Did you know that most household hazardous waste can be recycled, including paint, motor oil, fluorescent tubes and batteries? Just think of how much household waste we can divert from landfills and what a huge impact we can have on protecting the environment if we all collected these items from our homes or garages, and then turned them in to an Eco Station.

While I was dropping off my items, the helpful attendant mentioned that in addition to accepting household hazardous waste and electronics, Eco Stations also accept renovation waste and bulky items too big to set out for collection. (There’s a charge for this type of waste.) I was happy to learn this as my son is in the process of renovating his house and the scrap materials and waste are starting to pile up. I look forward to returning to the Kennedale Eco Station with my son to properly dispose of these materials.

With Spring finally here (don’t deny it!), I’m sure my son and I aren’t the only ones doing renovations and housecleaning, so I invite my fellow Edmontonians to take advantage of these programs and visit their local Eco Station. There’s now an Eco Station in each of the four quadrants of the city. The Reuse Area at Kennedale, like the one at the Ambleside Eco Station, allows residents to take items at no charge. Customers don’t even have to drop-off anything in order to take items. When I was there the Reuse area had a microwave, a pair of skis, a glass display case and many other great items all free for the taking! What better way to cap off a Saturday morning spent going to garage sales or antiquing than by clearing a little space in your home for your new finds (and bringing in some of your ‘old finds’ for others to reuse).

I’m sure, like me, you’ll enjoy your visit to an Eco Station. Not only will you be helping the environment, you’ll also find out what Edmonton is doing to divert household waste from landfills. I encourage you to go check out one of Edmonton’s four Eco Stations and learn more about our world renowned integrated waste management system.

A little extra thank-you to the community: At the opening of the new Eco Station, my attention was drawn to the ‘Turn Them In’ art piece created by community members, including children, out of items that had been dropped off at the other three Eco Stations around Edmonton. Each letter was made out of a different kind of item, for example cellphones for the ‘N’ and light bulbs for the ‘U’.  Watch this fun, short video that shows just how this group of 20 community members made the piece. A big thank-you goes out to all of them for their time and showing us one of the many ways to reuse. The piece will be displayed in the Reuse Area at the Kennedale Eco Station.