A different kind of sweeps week

‘Tis the season to learn; it’s been a couple of months since the school bell first sounded, and classes are now in full swing. But even if you’ve left the classroom behind, it’s never too late to learn something new – as businesses in central Alberta discovered earlier this month.

Photo of barrels filled with hazardous waste (antifreeze, pesticides, etc.)

It’s not always this easy to identify hazardous materials – that’s why businesses must follow strict rules when it comes to managing their waste.

All businesses produce waste – and some of it is too hazardous to be disposed of in our landfills. Alberta has strict rules about how companies dispose of hazardous waste and deal with recyclable material, but not everyone follows them or even knows how to do so. If a business doesn’t meet requirements, it can face both a fine and a bill for waste management upgrades – and that can get expensive, fast.

That’s why we conduct compliance sweeps throughout the year. On October 8th and 9th, our Environmental Protection Officers visited commercial businesses in Sylvan Lake, Stetller, and Innisfail to check up on waste disposal practices. Here’s what happened:

  1. Officers educated businesses about the rules we have and why they’re in place.
  2. We helped each business owner identify the changes needed to make their waste disposal system safe and environmentally sound.
  3. They were then given the option of making those changes instead of facing a fine.
  4. The end result? Safer waste disposal practices and a cleaner environment – which means everyone wins.

We’ll be following up with each business to ensure the necessary changes are made. And if they ever need more information, it will be easier than ever to get in touch with our staff – after all, they’ve now had the chance to meet them face-to-face. This makes our expertise more accessible – and that’s always a good thing. When everyone understands the rules, it makes following them a whole lot easier.

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