It only takes one drop of oil to contaminate 1 million litres of water. With that in mind, it’s important to take care and be sure to dispose of your used oil materials properly.
To help educate the public, B.C. Used Oil Management Association (BCUOMA) ambassadors Ali Omelaniec and Emily Louie are touring through the province meeting with people and checking on all the official used oil collection facilities.
The pair were in Castlegar on June 7 where they toured all the collection facilities and also took time to speak with the Castlegar News.
“Everybody here has this really good attitude about oil recycling and antifreeze recycling,” said Omelaniec. “As of last year we included antifreeze. Antifreeze doesn’t necessarily follow the same message as oil, but it’s still important to dispose of it because it is sweet smelling and children can get into it as well as animals and wildlife. We definitely are pushing the public to bring that back as well. All of the facilities in Castlegar are taking antifreeze from the public as well as used oil.”
In Castlegar there are six locations where you can drop off used oil and antifreeze materials: OK Tire, Canadian Tire, Ernie’s Used Auto Parts, Castlegar Hyundai, Kalawsky Chevrolet, and Glacier Honda.
“Across B.C. we have a 73 per cent recovery rate,” said Omelaniec. “So that means that across the province, 73 per cent of the oil is being recovered and reused. What happens with the used oil is that it can be recycled and reused as fuel in pulp mills or cement plants, or it can be used for lubrication.”
There is no charge for people dropping off oil at the registered facilities. People do pay an initial environmental handling charge when purchasing new oil and antifreeze materials.
Omelaniec says one of the biggest problems they see at the recycle facilities is night drop offs.
“Where the public comes in and drops off their oil outside of business hours,” she said. “Our job is to go around the province and educate the public on why it’s important to come during business hours. We don’t want the oil spilling outside our collection facilities. We want to keep it clean and easy for the collection return facilities so they stay in our program.”