Queen Charlotte resident Faye Laidlaw has been upcycling glass materials currently not accepted by the recycling system that serves Haida Gwaii. (Faye Laidlaw/Submitted photo)

Haida Gwaii resident upcycles glass into ‘quarantini’ tumblers

Faye Laidlaw of Queen Charlotte making tumblers, candleholders to keep glass out of landfill

Residents of Haida Gwaii may be able to recycle glass, tin cans and Styrofoam again if proposed changes to the North Coast Regional District (NCRD) Solid Waste Management Plan go forward.

Speaking to the Queen Charlotte and Port Clements village councils on July 20 and Aug. 4, respectively, NCRD chief administrative officer Daniel Fish said that if the islands move away from unmonitored recycling bins, they may be able to reach compliance with Recycle BC and “accept the full gamut of products again.”

ALSO READ: Regional district proposes closure of unmonitored recycling bins, new depot for Masset

Until then, Queen Charlotte resident Faye Laidlaw has found an innovative way to keep her glass waste out of the local landfill.

Laidlaw told the Observer she used to take her glass to Tickers Hauling and Storage, but since they stopped accepting it, she started saving her jam and pickle jars for creative reuse.

“It’d be a shame if they end up in the landfill,” she said.

Unable to recycle the glass materials, she has been upcycling instead, cutting them into glasses, candle holders and other containers.

She has also been sandblasting custom phrases onto the glasses, such as “stay home, save lives.” She even made some Haida Gwaii “quarantini” glasses out of empty wine bottles.

“I’ve had lots of fun,” she said, adding that she has been keeping busy during isolation and social distancing orders, making more than 50 of the upcycled items for herself and friends.

ALSO READ: Artist Kathryn Fudge’s garden sculptures created from t-shirts

Laidlaw said her upcycling inspiration came from a trip she took to the Northwest Territories years ago.

“There’s a shop up there that does it,” she said. “They didn’t have recycling up there either so that’s what the shop started doing.”

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