Re-Use For Good

Plastic waste and marine litter, including microplastics, pose a serious threat to the health of our oceans, waterways and well-being. Only 9% of single-use plastics in Canada are recycled and in Metro Vancouver, 1.1 billion single-use items are disposed of each year. Some of the most problematic single-use plastics are found in food services such as water bottles, plates, utensils, cups, stir sticks and creamers.

Compostable or biodegradable dinnerware, such as utensils, also poses significant environmental problems contrary to popular belief. Even if they make it to a high-temperature industrial composting facility, the quality of the compost is often not sufficient and still requires significant energy to process and transport. The “compostable” bio-plastics break down into a very sticky, resiny debris that creates poor quality compost that’s not rich and nutritious for plants like compost from truly organic materials. When these biodegradable items reach the oceans, they act just like plastic and only break down into smaller and smaller pieces because there is insufficient high temperature to break them down.

That is why MECS, in partnership with Re-use for Good, favours the use of reusable products over single-use plastics or bioplastics. MECS has eliminated a variety of single-use plastics from our events to ensure we can meet and gather without harming the environment.

Re-use For Good In MECS:

Discontinued products:

• Any polystyrene (Styrofoam) product

• Plastic coffee stir-sticks

• Plastic plates and utensils

• Plastic water bottles

• Plastic juice & pop bottles

• Wood stir sticks (Burnaby)

• Balloons

• Coroplast signage

• Plastic Creamers and Milkers

Other tactics helping implement Re-use for Good:

• MECS will ensure that a four (4) stream waste station is placed at, or near, every event with proper signage.

• MECS will ensure that a portable water bottle filling station is available at large Burnaby outdoor events.

For more info about SFU's Re-use For Good Program, click here.