2007 Rs of Excellence Award Winners

2007 Public Spaces Recycling Award: Calgary Stampede

The Calgary Stampede has an extensive recycling program that takes into account all waste streams. Highlights of the program include the composting of 9,300 tonnes of bedding waste generated by livestock, 2.8 tonnes of organic waste from food operations and the recycling of 26,000 beverage containers collected from the midway during the annual fair. The Stampede communicates this program through the weekly Environmental Tour of their recycling initiatives available to all employees and visiting school kids on the Molley the Trolley bus! The highlight of the tour for the kids is the Bulb Eater which separates the mercury from 1500 fluorescent light tubes a year.

2007 Community Recycling Award: Newell Recycling Association

The Newell Recycling Association was formed in 1992 and has continued to grow since that time. It outgrew its original home and it now operates a “full-service” facility complete with 24 hour drop-off, a horizontal baler, and plastic chipping capability.

The Association has always had a strong working relationship with the Town (now City) of Brooks and was one of the first projects to have its own full-sized garbage truck to collect cardboard. And they, in turn, have always been good neighbours and friends to recycling programs in the area. For example they have worked closely with the Bassano group, helping them process material. They are also truly a community organization. They employ people with special needs whenever possible and truly include those individuals in all aspects of the program including the annual meeting.

One cannot talk about the Newell Recycling Association without recognizing the role that Doug Shanks has played the past 10 years. It has been a time of continuous growth and expansion into new programs and services. The depot has helped support itself through collection of oil field and army plastics, confidential paper shredding and was the first to start collecting plastic baler twine. They even operate a blue box collection service that services over 115 households. It’s a busy operation with 6 full-time staff and 2 summer students.

Congratulation to Doug and staff, the Board and all the others that have made the Newell Recycling Association and outstanding example of a community-based program.

2007 Institutional Award: University of Alberta

One of the University’s key goals is to minimize its impact on the environment and contribute towards sustainable facilities. In recent years, the U of A has made waste management and reduction a focus for sustainable practices. Recycling is the cornerstone of our waste reduction program and the University has already made important strides in recycling. Our paper recycling program has been in place for 35 years – 80% of paper used on campus is recycled. Our beverage container recycling program began in 1995 – about 600,000 containers are recycled every year. The University also recycles cardboard, ink and toner cartridges, fluorescent lamps, refrigerants, motor oil, oil filters, tires, office and vehicle batteries, scrap metal, wood pallets, branches, leaves and road grit.

Facilities Management knew that still more could be done. In 2006, a consultant was hired to perform a waste audit and provide baseline data for the design of a long-term waste management strategy. As a result, the University has undertaken three main initiatives which are expected to result in another 30% decrease in the amount of waste going to landfill by 2010:

  • Increase awareness of recycling on campus through signage, website information and regular feedback to the University community.
  • Increase the capture rates for recyclables by standardizing bin colours and increasing the number of collection bins. A $600,000 recycling transfer station (possibly the first of its kind in Alberta) has been completed on campus. This will allow more recyclables to be removed from Campus using less fuel.
  • Divert organic waste (food waste and related paper products, paper towels, tissue and animal bedding) from the current waste stream. Kitchens will be equipped with bins for plastics, cardboard, glass, light metal and organics. The organic waste will be composted at an Edmonton area facility and returned to the campus to be used by our grounds staff in shrub & flower beds.

Waste reduction through enhanced recycling is an important sustainable practice. Facilities Management remains committed to a leadership role in finding more ways to ensure that the University of Alberta continues to be an environmentally responsible and productive place to work and study.

2007 Innovation Award: LOGical Creations Ltd.

Logical Creations Ltd. is a small Airdrie, Alberta-based company that produces custom handmade log furniture from Alberta pine. Logical Creations’ environmental initiatives include:

  • a zero waste policy
  • harvesting only Alberta trees which have already died naturally thus lessening the fuel for future forest fires)
  • utilizing off cut scrap wood and sharing them with the community as fire wood
  • composting of saw dust and shavings
  • recycling all office by-products
  • using natural stains on their furniture
  • peeling all logs by hand with draw knives
  • air drying all logs
  • applying stains and lacquers with brush instead of spraying

Logical Creations challenges all Alberta companies to think outside the box and find new ways to reduce waste and continue to produce the best products the country has to offer.

2007 Non-Profit Award: Clean Calgary Association

Clean Calgary was formed in 1975, and has the mission to empower Calgarians to create healthy homes and communities through environmental education, products and services.

Clean Calgary operates a number of waste reduction programs, including the Calgary Materials Exchange (CMEX), which works to build relationships between companies and provide opportunities and information to facilitate exchanges of material for reuse and recycling.

Another Clean Calgary program is Waste Wise – a community-based social marketing pilot project to encourage and engage 100 Dalhousie households to reduce their waste by 30% through home composting. This program is an extension of Clean Calgary’s long-standing Master Composter program.

Throughout its twenty-five year history one service has withstood the test of time, namely providing information on everything from recycling locations to practical ideas about leading an environmentally friendly lifestyle.

2007 Lifetime Achievement Award: Dennis Hambleton

Dennis’ involvement in the management of used oil materials started in 1992 with a one week contract with the Alberta Department of Environment. This one week contract led to a 15 year career that has seen many significant achievements.

The initial task with used oil materials was working with industry and other stakeholders through the Western Canadian Task Force to design a program to ensure used oil materials were collected for recycling or reprocessing. This program was launched in Alberta in 1997 and has been very successful.

But Dennis’ contribution doesn’t stop at the Alberta borders. In the early stages of the program, Dennis worked with his counterparts in BC, Manitoba and Saskatchewan to ensure similar programs were launched successfully in those provinces. Subsequently, the Quebec Used Oil Management Association was launched in 2005.

Although the used oil materials programs have been very successful there are probably two key accomplishments that stand out more than all the others.

First is the national and international recognition that the programs have received. Dennis has travelled internationally to discuss and review the program and its success. AUOMA is recognized world-wide as a model of Extended Producer Responsibility and was the focus of an independent study prepared for Environment Canada for a global Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) workshop on the “Economics of Extended Producer Responsibility”.

The second key accomplishment is the unprecedented cooperation and uniformity of the used oil programs across the country. The current programs in BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Quebec are very similar and share all the key fundamentals of the original Alberta model. This makes it very easy for all stakeholders to understand and participate in the programs, especially those who conduct business in more than one province. Dennis was instrumental in the formation of the National Used Oil Materials Advisory Council (NUOMAC) which has representatives of all the Associations and its key purpose is to ensure the programs maintain the spirit of cooperation and uniformity that has always existed. Dennis’ leadership has fostered and maintained an environment of mutual respect and trust that is essential to maintaining the consistency of all the programs.

Dennis’ vision has been to have the Alberta used oil program in place across Canada. He has led the charge for the past 15 years and we have made substantial progress with programs in place and operating successfully in 5 provinces. All of Dennis’ friends and colleagues in the used oil materials family will continue to be led and challenged by this vision to ensure we “Make Every Drop Count!”