What Does The Brick Recycle?
Through a mix of our own machinery, third-party partners and government programs, The Brick recycles the vast majority of our product packaging. Each of our distribution centres has a dedicated Green Zone where recyclables are processed, stored and shipped. We continue to adopt new ways to reuse or repurpose even more materials every year.
The Brick recycles:
- Expanded polystyrene (Styrofoam™)
- Pallets and wood products
- Office Waste
Making up nearly a quarter of our total weight, cardboard is our most recycled material. All Brick distribution centres recycle cardboard. We also use larger trucks and trailers so we can reroute cardboard from our stores back to distribution centres for recycling.
According to our Project Green partners, each tonne (2,000 pounds) of recycled paper can save 17 trees, 1,438 litres of oil, three cubic yards of landfill space, 4,000 kilowatts of energy and 26,497 litres of water. This represents a 64% energy savings, a 58% water savings and a 60-pound reduction in air pollution.
By recycling 3,823 metric tonnes of cardboard in 2016, we saved:
- 65,002 trees
- 665,693 litres of oil
- 1,472,096 kilowatts of electricity
Most plastics take over 500 years to decompose, and that’s longer than we’re willing to wait.
By recycling 275 metric tonnes of plastic in 2016, we saved:
- 1,561,777 litres of gasoline
- 413,734 litres of crude oil
- 1,557 cubic yards of landfill space
Expanded polystyrene (ESP), more commonly known as Styrofoam™, can’t be thrown into your blue bags. But it can be recycled, and The Brick is one of the few Canadian companies who recycle ESP.
In partnership with Recycle Tech, we use a polystyrene densifier to break down and repurpose ESP to make products like picture frames, construction mouldings and plastic casings.
In 2016, The Brick recycled 237 metric tonnes of EPS.
Since old mattresses often can’t be donated for hygienic reasons, The Brick recycles them through our Project Green initiative.
Mattresses are treated for bugs, then stripped and baled. The foam and cloth is shipped to be processed into bedding or carpet underlay, while the reclaimed wood is used to make particle board. The metal springs are melted down to be used for furniture and car parts.
In 2016, The Brick recycled 1,366 metric tonnes of mattresses.
Appliances and Electronics
The Brick partners with third-party companies to recycle old appliances and electronics. Depending on their condition, appliances are either refurbished or sent for scrap metal recycling.
Although we don’t recycle electronics on site, we accept old electronics at any of our distribution centres (excluding Manitoba). We then take them to the nearest eco station or specialized waste disposal centre.