Montreal's recycling centres to cease operations as early as next week

The city says it's looking for a new company to operate the centres and that putting recyclable materials in landfills is "not an option."

City looking for new operator, says putting recyclables in landfills is 'not an option'

Montreal's $50-million recycling centre in Lachine was inaugurated last year. The city owns the building and equipment, but the company that runs it says it will cease operations in the coming days. (Ivanoh Demers/Radio-Canada)

Montrealers should continue to put out their recycling, as scheduled — but city officials can't yet say who will be receiving them at the city's sorting centres.

Jean-François Parenteau, the executive committee member responsible for city services and the environment, said Rebuts solides Canadiens informed the government Friday morning that the company will no longer operate its four recycling centres across the province — including the two used by the City of Montreal.

"All the recycling operations will continue. For us, the most important is to keep the service for all the Montrealers," said Parenteau.

He said the city is considering its options as it awaits formal notice about when and how the company will end its contract. He said he is expecting that formal notice in the coming days.

"The landfill is not an option for us," Parenteau said.

Rebuts solides Canadiens, a subsidiary of France-based TIRU, said in a statement Thursday that it can no longer find a market for its recycled paper and is thus no longer profitable.

The company runs the city's new facility in Lachine, which opened last year, as well as the centre in Saint-Michel.

While the city owns both buildings, it only owns the equipment in Lachine .

City 'at the mercy' of RSC: Opposition

Opposition Ensemble Montréal Coun. Francesco Miele said it is the city that should be saying how and when RSC will cease operations, and the administration has "lost control" of the situation.

He said the city appears to be "at the mercy" of its recycling operator, after spending millions of dollars to preserve the Saint-Michel sorting centre in 2018 and awarding it the contract to operate the Lachine plant.

He said the city should consider, among other options, having a non-profit corporation run recycling services in Montreal.

The two facilities process about 160,000 tonnes of material per year.

The company will also cease operations at its centres in Châteauguay and Saguenay.


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