Kingston council approves textile recycling pilot project


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The pilot project is to see Renewal Squared Inc. placing collection bins on up to 20 city properties.

Textiles account for about 4.43 per cent of the garbage collected at curbside, adding about 750 tonnes of garbage to the city’s landfill.

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Across North America, about 65 per cent of used clothing, bed sheets, towels and other textiles goes to landfills.

In Canada, it is estimated that three billion pounds of textiles go to landfill each year.

Trevor McCaw of Renewal Squared told council that better recycling of textiles is needed to address the “crisis of stuff.”

McCaw said the company would accept all textiles, in any condition. Items in better shape can be resold, while items that are in poorer condition can be recycled into rags or other textile items. Some unusable items will go into the trash.

The company’s collection bins would be electronically monitored to prevent them from overflowing or items from piling up on the ground around them.

City council turned down a proposal from Diabetes Canada to set up a similar collection system in the city.

Simon Langer of Diabetes Canada told council that the charity uses income from the resale of donated textiles to fund diabetes-related research and programs.

But council opted instead to keep the pilot project focused on one collecting company.

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