A good sense of humour is something I appreciate, but not when it comes at the expense of the city I love and call home.
So when I see people deliberately dumping their garbage right under a City of Burnaby sign that says “no dumping” I find myself not laughing.
Not one bit.
The sign is on Horne Street near Lougheed mall in a fire lane.
This isn’t the first time it’s happened.
The infuriating thing is that there are resources available to help people dispose of their stuff, such as mattresses and other items.
That, of course, requires people to sacrifice a little of their time and effort. People are, of course, often lazy and so they take the easy way out and damage our community. I literally cannot drive around our city one time without seeing something dumped illegally.
The regional government called Metro Vancouver is pushing to stop the dumping of these mattresses, plus other items.
In 2020, Metro Vancouver municipalities reported more than 47,000 incidents of illegal dumping, an increase of 8% from 2019 (the last numbers I’ve seen issued). Cleaning up and properly disposing of that abandoned waste and operating large-item pickup programs costs local governments about $5.8 million each year.
The most common types of abandoned waste include bulky items — mattresses, furniture, appliances, carpeting and tires — as well as green waste, household garbage and construction debris.
Old mattresses, broken microwaves and expired car seats aren’t the only types of items that need to be considered.
The region’s residents trashed more than 500 million pieces of PPE last year, according to a recent waste composition study, and a significant amount of PPE has been found littered on streets and in green spaces, causing headaches for residents and municipalities alike.
Visit wasteinitsplace.ca for waste disposal and donation options, and use the municipal search tool to find large-item disposal programs in your community. The site also provides information on safe PPE disposal options and tips for washing reusable masks.
Follow Chris Campbell on Twitter @shinebox44.