Gibsons Recycling has purchased two electric mini-cube vans that will soon make curbside collection possible in Gibsons.
The company plans to use the vans for an optional curbside program that will start in Gibsons and could expand to surrounding areas if things go well.
Gibsons Recycling owner Buddy Boyd has been vocally against mandated curbside pickup in the past, but he said an optional “pay as you throw” system coupled with minimal environmental impact from electric vehicle travel made the move attractive.
“There are always people calling to see if we have a pickup service, and I’ve thought about it, but until now it didn’t make sense,” Boyd said, noting he and his partner Barb Hetherington have “gone all in on the social responsibility model” for Gibsons Recycling.
He said the pair have committed to running their business in a way that has a positive effect on the community and the environment.
“We’re never going to make our money back on this, but it was the right thing to do,” Boyd said.
The electric vehicles cost the company more than $110,000, which was money that had to be borrowed.
After explaining his idea to Community Futures Sunshine Coast, Boyd said the local community investment organization was eager to back him.
“Everyone we told about it was really excited and willing to help, actually,” he said, noting it’s the first electric vehicle powered collection service he’s heard of in North America.
“Several local businesses and institutions are collaborating within this program, including Greenomics, Community Futures, the Gibsons Copy Shop and Cypress Power.”
Boyd plans to start offering the curbside service next week and information will be sent to Gibsons residents via the mail soon. Information can also be found on the company’s website at www.gibsonsrecycling.ca starting Oct. 5.
Boyd explained that users can sign up for the service, get a special box and bag liner for $20, and then pay a base amount of $10 to have their sorted recycling picked up. As volume, increases so will the price.
The new curbside collection service is meant to complement the Gibsons Recycling Depot, not replace it.
“It is aimed at those people who don’t have a vehicle, are sick or can’t visit our depot because they’re too busy,” Boyd said.
To find out more, see the Gibsons Recycling website, or call 604-740-1425.