Expanded Polystyrene Recycling and Potential Disposal Ban

Expanded polystyrene (EPS), often called Styrofoam, is bulky and lightweight and represents a large portion of the region's garbage. Instead of being disposed, it can be recycled.

Local recycling exists for both residential and commercially generated expanded polystyrene.

  • Residents can drop expanded polystyrene off free of charge at certain recycling depots; to find a drop off location near you, visit metrovancouverrecycles.
  • Businesses can send it for recycling at local facilities for a fee; to find a facility for businesses, visit metrovancouverrecycles.

What is a disposal ban?

Banning recyclable materials from disposal is one of Metro Vancouver’s regulatory tools to encourage recycling. There’s a financial deterrent for not recycling. Surcharges can be applied if banned materials are found in the garbage at regional disposal facilities.

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Public Engagement and Consultation

Metro Vancouver engaged with those who use, sell, transport and recycle EPS to better understand the existing system and the viability of a disposal ban. Metro Vancouver also collected feedback from interested parties through a workshop and on-line feedback.

 View presentation slides from the June 7, 2017 workshop

View Feedback Survey Form (received until June 30, 2017)

Contact us if you are interested in learning more about this project.

The consultation period is now closed. In October 2017, the GVS&DD Board approved introducing a surcharge on garbage loads containing expanded polystyrene packaging. Starting July 2018, a surcharge of 100% of the tipping fee will be applied to loads containing over 20% expanded polystyrene packaging.

Info card on the Expanded Polystyrene Packaging Disposal Ban

Letter describing the Disposal Ban Program

Project Timeline