Our Alternative Approach to Run Against Plastic

Can you believe we’re already in Saskatchewan? This beautiful province is both prairie and boreal, meaning there’s some impressive biodiversity to be explored. On top of this, Saskatchewan’s rivers, lakes, and reservoirs make up 10 per cent of the province! With all this land and water to be protected, Saskatchewan organizations lead waste reduction and recycling efforts to keep the province clean. We’d like to introduce you to a couple of organizations that are making a real difference in Saskatchewan.

Phase two complete! Andy Sward from Million Bottle Pledge has just finished his second plogging trip of the year and once again tracked some impressive numbers: he travelled 1,063 km and cleaned up 4,390 bottles from the roadside on this trip alone!

We want to thank Andy for all his hard work on this run and for keeping British Columbia beautiful. Rest up and we’ll see you again soon!

Let’s get started! We begin this week’s tour with SARCAN Recycling, a beverage container recycling depot with 73 locations across Saskatchewan. In Saskatchewan, beverage containers are sold with an added deposit that can be refunded after use. As a result, SARCAN partners with the province to be the go-to spot for beverage container refunds and recycling!

If you go to the SARCAN website, not only will you find plenty of information on recyclables, but also information on how recycling works at SARCAN. Check out their How Recycling Works web page to read up on the different paths taken by plastic, aluminum, glass, and paper containers on their recycling journey! There’s also a great “How SARCAN Recycles” video available that can be shared with children to teach them about the lifecycle of beverage containers. Both of these resources demonstrate how all recyclables that are brought to SARCAN are processed within North America, rather than shipped overseas. They are also all given a second life, kept out of landfills. Though we recycle everyday, we don’t always know what actually happens to the products we’re putting in the bin. Luckily, SARCAN has put together an awesome resource that reminds us why recycling is so important.

And maybe you’ve heard of a bottle drive? Well, SARCAN offers virtual bottle drives that streamline the process for you! Fundraising organizations can register for a virtual bottle drive with SARCAN so that their supporters donate their refund directly to the organization. Participating organizations can be schools, charities, local sports teams, and more! 

All supporters need to do is bring their recyclables into SARCAN and input the organization’s phrase to make sure their refund goes to the right place. It’s that easy! By partnering with fundraising organizations in a virtual bottle drive, SARCAN is keeping more beverage containers out of landfills, while also supporting local organizations!

Even Plastic Oceans Canada is registered for a virtual bottle drive at SARCAN! All you need to do to participate is bring your recyclable beverage containers to a SARCAN Drop & Go counter, enter the group phase “CLEAN UP CANADA,” and label your order — SARCAN will do the rest! 

It’s never been easier for residents of Saskatchewan to receive their deposit refunds and reduce the amount of recyclable material ending up in landfills! Thanks to SARCAN, recycling beverage containers is easy and accessible!

Learn more about beverage container recycling in Saskatchewan by visiting the SARCAN Recycling website.

Next up is the Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council (SWRC), a non-profit organization helping residents of Saskatchewan cut back on their waste! With a focus on community and the environment, the SWRC’s website provides numerous resources on waste reduction.

Do you have anything at home that you’re just not sure how to get rid of? Do you have any idea what you’re supposed to do with an old carpet? What about drywall or used oil? The SWRC can help! A quick stop on their website and you’ll know how to responsibly recycle just about anything! The SWRC’s Recycle web page is a handy resource for recycling all kinds of household waste, so you never have to guess again. Looking up how to recycle batteries, for example, the SWRC provides helpful info on what’s in a battery, why they can’t just go in the garbage, where in Saskatchewan you can recycle them, as well as tips on how to reduce your battery usage altogether! It’s a one-stop-shop for all your recycling questions and concerns.

And if you’re not sure where to start with waste reduction, check out the SWRC’S Green Living blog series! In addition to all the recycling info already available, their blog is full of helpful tips on waste reduction, upcycling, responsible recycling, and so on.

The blog series follows one author’s own adventures in green living, offering real-life stories that show the reader how green living options pop up in our everyday lives. Some recent blogs cover restoring hiking boots, baking homemade bread, sorting recycling during the pandemic, and more. The SWRC audience can certainly relate to some of the author’s experiences and see how they can implement waste reduction strategies on their own. 

By providing resources in many forms, the SWRC is engaging and empowering the people of Saskatchewan in waste reduction solutions that will benefit our environments and communities. For those living in Saskatchewan, the SWRC website is a comprehensive tool in reducing waste that every household can use!

Check out the Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council website to learn more about this awesome non-profit.


Thank you for joining us on our virtual tour of Saskatchewan! Check back next week to discover some Alberta organizations. Did you miss our previous stop? No worries, it’s not too late to learn about Manitoba!

Rachel Petersen was a Communications Intern for Plastic Oceans Canada, studying Professional Writing and Communications at Humber College.