By Steve Hubrecht
Curbside compost collection is coming to Invermere. Grant funding will pay for most of the new program, which will be on the District of Invermere’s 2023 work plan. Some preliminary work may even begin later this year.
Invermere Mayor, Al Miller, told the Pioneer that this means local residents will likely have a green compost bin at their homes in addition to the black garbage bins and blue recycle bins they currently have.
A three-way green and black and blue bin system is already common in many B.C. municipalities, and it’s time Invermere joined them, explained Miller.
The program will involve weekly curbside pickup as well as a central drop-off location, much like Invermere’s garbage collection program, with the central drop-off area likely to be located near the Invermere sewage lagoons.
Miller said that, like Invermere’s garbage and recycling collection program, the composting collection would be run as a contracted service, rather than by district staff.
The program will be partially funded by a provincial grant, given to the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) to set up three composting centres through the regional district, including one in Invermere.
Invermere will get $173,000 from that grant for the composting program, which will cover 66 per cent of the program’s cost, with the district kicking in the remaining 33 per cent ($86,500).
“Then we will have full-on composting which will be a major plus for our landfill. Or a major minus for our landfill, depending on how you look at it, as it will mean much less waste going to the landfill. It will extended the life our landfill considerably,” said Miller.
He cautioned that people will need to be careful about making sure to only put out their composting bins for pickup a few hours before curbside pickup times, as Invermere is certainly bear country.
“People will need to follow the rules. Don’t put it out the night before. It’s just like our curbside garbage pickup,” said Miller, adding he doesn’t think it will be too hard for residents to follow the rules and the program will be great for the district overall.
“We’ve tried a few smaller scale composting programs in the past. This is different, it’s on a major scale. I’m really looking forward to it,” he said.