Considering end-of-life management in municipal tenders
This spring, the Municipal Collaboration for Sustainable Procurement (MCSP) launched its latest Annual Report on the State of Sustainable Public Procurement in Canada containing 9 success stories from members including this story from the City of Edmonton below. Download the full report here.
City of Edmonton diverts used oil filters and containers, glycol, and waste fuel from landfills
In June 2018, the City of Edmonton awarded a contract for the sustainable end-of–life management of oil and oil products, such as oil filters and containers, glycol, and waste fuel, from the City’s Eco Stations and fleet maintenance shops.
First, the tender required bidders to validate their downstream processes showing how products will be processed and recycled. Then, the Corporate Procurement and Supply Services Branch worked with the Waste Services Branch to choose a credible processor and create a contract that ensures the processor complies with the City’s environmental regulations and effectively diverts oil and oil products from landfills.
Through this tender, a significant amount of oil and oil products is diverted from landfills. High quality used automotive oil is re-refined into new lubricating oil. Lower quality used oil is processed into a fuel that can be used by pulp mills, cement and asphalt plants, and other industrial applications. Oil filters are crushed (with the residual oil captured) and processed by a metal recycler for manufacturing into construction materials such as rebar and pipe. Plastic oil containers are pelletized and used as feedstock for products such as new containers, guardrails, fence posts and railway ties.
According to Hieu Lam, Senior Buyer at the City’s Corporate Procurement and Supply Services, “We were able to facilitate this procurement because we have the appropriate infrastructure in place. The City’s Eco Stations do a great job in collecting and separating product, which makes it easier for the processor to collect and haul the product to their site.” In this case, the City has taken a full life cycle and multi-stakeholder approach that involves engaging with suppliers as partners in delivering an effective city program.
City of Edmonton’s Eco Station Program
The City of Edmonton’s Eco Station program provides residents four convenient, environmentally sound, cost–effective, and safe facilities to drop off household hazardous waste (including oil and oil products), universal waste, general waste, and recyclables. It has operated for 23 years, and as of 2016 served over 2.7 million customers and diverted over 4 million gallons of household hazardous waste (HHW). The program is responsible for the diversion of almost half of the HHW in the Province of Alberta, though it represents only 21% of the population. It was honored with a Special Waste Management Gold Award of Excellence from the Solid Waste Association of North America in 2016.