Service provider of McLennan’s curbside recycling program narrows list of acceptable items

Tom Henihan
Express Staff

The company that provides recycling services to the Town of McLennan is reducing the list of acceptable materials in its “curbside commingled recycling program,” and by November 1, will no longer accept the previous range of materials.

The GFL (Green for Life) Environmental cites changes in China for making the modifications to its recycling programs necessary.

Through a policy called “National Sword” China now restricts the import of North American recyclable commodities such as plastics and paper.

The new restrictions in China have created a drop in commodity markets that have become especially evident over the last six months.

To further exacerbate the situation, following China’s lead, international markets have also imposed new stringent requirements.

Due to these developments, GFL says it must expend far greater cost in processing to meet new criteria that yields far lower values in commodity sale revenue. It also says that many commodities are no longer marketable at all.

GFL also expressed its concern that the public perception may arise that the curbside recycling programs are not living up to expectations.

However, they believe that it is time to realign the reality of these programs, and with proper compliance with the acceptable items list, the company does not anticipate more than a 10 percent reduction by weight of materials.

In a letter to the Town of McLennan, outlining the changes to the program, Lorenzo Donini, Manager, Material Processing and Municipal Development, GFL Environmental Inc. said:

“We believe long-term it is necessary course correction to stop unsustainable practices that were becoming commonplace over the last several years.”

For the revised acceptable list of recyclable items, visit the Town of McLennan Facebook page or the Town’s website at For additional information contact the Town Office at 780-324-3065.


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