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Regina recycling plant finally opens its doors

REGINA – Work is finally underway at a new Regina recycling facility, four months after originally planned.

Following a construction setback, Emterra Group officially opened its Recyclable Materials Recovery Facility on Monday.

More than 3,000 tonnes of paper, plastic and other materials have gone through as part of the City of Regina’s blue cart recycling program.

“We were one of the last major cities to have a recycling program,” said Mayor Michael Fougere. “People were waiting for it, we waited years to put it together, and we’re very pleased with it.”

The city says over two-thirds of households are taking part regularly in curbside pickup, with that number to grow once condos and apartment buildings are added in the coming years.

But that growth does bring challenges.

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“The typical items we do see are hoses, kids toys,” said Emterra Groups’ Paulina Leung of residents still confused about what belongs in the blue cart.

Fougere cited examples of households trying to recycle things like small kitchen appliances.

Overall, however, just 10 per cent of items being recycled don’t belong.

“The citizens have done a good job,” Leung said. “The amount of non-recyclable items we see here is not atypical of a mature program anywhere in Canada.”

The city hopes to improve that, along with the goal of diverting nearly half of household waste from the landfill by 2015.