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ACRD celebrates anniversary of Sort’n’Go pilot project with First Nations

Roadside collection humming along in Tofino, Ucluelet, hitacu̓, Esowista, and Ty-histanis
The ACRD worked with WildSafeBC, the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation and Surfrider Pacific Rim to help deliver new carts across the West Coast in 2022. (Westerly file photo)

The Alberni Clayoquot Regional District is celebrating the one-year anniversary of its partnership with the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation and Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ Government that introduced three-stream, roadside collection to the communities of hitacu̓, Esowista, and Ty-histanis.

“This has been a big change for everyone on the West Coast – in particular for the residents of hitacu̓, who have shifted successfully from community dumpsters to three-stream, roadside collection. This is an important part of improving our sustainability, and I congratulate everyone involved,” said the Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ Government’s Acting Joint Director of Operations/ Assets Manager Spencer Touchie in an announcement circulated last week celebrating the anniversary.

The Sort’nGo Pilot Project launched in October of 2022 has led to the diversion of roughly 175 kg of waste per household, on average, over the past year, according to the announcement.

“We’re so thankful to Tla-o-qui-aht and Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ for taking the lead on this new service a year ago,” said the ACRD’s Solid Waste Project Coordinator Jodie Frank through the announcement.

“We learned a lot from that preliminary roll out that helped the wider region and ultimately has made the program more successful.”

Prior to the introduction of roadside collection with the Sort’nGo Pilot Project, all three communities had previously used central collection points and the new program included helping set up an organics collection program through the wider region.

“We have all worked hard to implement these changes, and we’re happy that we were able to help as a leader in creating a healthier, cleaner community for our members and for the rest of the West Coast,” said Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation Public Works Manager Shawn Quick.

The ACRD launched a West Coast Solid Waste Working Group in early 2019, including representation from Ucluelet, Tofino, Parks Canada, Tla-o-qui-aht, Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ, and Toquaht.

“This group assessed the effectiveness of waste management in the region to find opportunities for improvement, including the implementation of organics diversion. Since the roll out of three-stream collection, Tla-o-qui-aht and Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ have continued to be an important part of the waste management work on the West Coast, the announcement states.

It adds that the project “also fostered new partnership opportunities with TFN for services associated to cart distribution and maintenance services.”

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Andrew Bailey

About the Author: Andrew Bailey

I arrived at the Westerly News as a reporter and photographer in January 2012.
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