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Recycling and clean-up company LOCAL Metal reinforces industrial circular economy in West Kootenay

Local Industrial Partners Vice President of Operations Garett White is one of the local faces on-site at the newly opened full-service registered scrap metal recycling yard in Genelle.
Local Industrial Partners Vice President of Operations Garett White is one of the local faces on-site at the newly opened full-service registered scrap metal recycling yard in Genelle. LOCAL Metal

West Kootenay residents and business owners no longer have to commute to recycle valuable scrap metal since LOCAL Metal opened its doors in Genelle, B.C., this spring.

After SECURE Energy — which is headquartered in Calgary, AB — centralized its Kootenay metal recycling facilities in January 2023, an opportunity arose. The new LOCAL Metal operation, expected to employ up to five staff, is centrally located to serve the West Kootenays and greater area as a full-service registered scrap metal recycling yard.

"Processing metal recycling here and shipping materials directly to regional mills is a win-win for everybody, emissions-wise and cost-wise," says Local Industrial Partners Vice President of Operations Garett White. "We're motivated to make sure that the value stays within our region."

There is plenty of residential and commercial recycling to manage in both the East and West Kootenays, according to White, who estimates the rural area — rich in the industrial, technology, and metallurgy sectors — generates thousands of metric tons of recyclable metal annually.

"Without a local option, we started to see appliances illegally dumped on the side of forestry service roads. People were forced to use landfills, and tradespeople were hauling valuable loads to the nearest facilities in Spokane, Cranbrook, or Kelowna to recycle their high-value commodities," says White. "We saw a need for a metal recycling facility to remain in our area, especially since B.C. strives to be so environmentally friendly. It just made sense to keep the service here for the local people."

Scrap metal recycling is the process of recovering and processing scrap metal from end-of-life items to reuse in new goods. Metals are collected, shredded, processed, and sent directly back to mills to create a product to spec, emitting far less carbon and using resources more efficiently than manufacturing new material from raw ore.

"It's not only good business, but also more environmentally friendly than going out and mining ore. We are essentially mining urban areas for materials that we already have," adds White. "Our focus now is on educating our communities on what can be recycled to help clean up our neighbourhoods and put money back into residents' pockets."

The collection site accepts all metals except sealed containers like propane tanks, or wet (oil or fuel-filled) units, as it poses a safety risk. Residents and business owners can bring in their scrap metal and receive a payout or take advantage of LOCAL Metal's roll-off bin truck for one-time pick-ups or long-term operational bin service. The company also provides mobile demolition and clean-up services for industrial boneyards and agricultural, farm, or estate properties, using heavy-duty equipment including a shear, baler, and excavator equipped with a magnet to efficiently remove all metal from a site.

LOCAL Metal was founded by Local Industrial Partners Ltd., a group of engineers and environmental technologists with over 50 years of combined industry experience. It's the latest business exemplifying the region's dedication to an industrial circular economy, according to Metal Tech Alley, which aims to reduce, reuse, recycle, and recover energy and materials to maximize sustainable life cycles.  

"This region has a unique ecosystem for the industrial circular economy, and we are fortunate to have LOCAL Metal in the area to assist us with closing the loop," says Metal Tech Alley Director Jacomien van Tonder. 

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