Tumbler Ridge News is Going Green

Residents of Tumbler Ridge will soon see some changes in the delivery of their local newspaper. Tumbler Ridge News delivery service is going green and the newspaper and flyers wrapped in a plastic bag is going to end. The newspaper will still be delivered door to door, but wrapped a little differently. Soon residents will find their newspaper wrapped in an environmentally friendly elastic band.

Many residents recycle their newspaper but may not recycle the plastic bag that the newspapers are currently packaged in and most go into our household garbage cans.

Tumbler Ridge News is delivered to between 890 to 1000 homes per week. If one was to do the math that?s 46,800 to 52,000 bags going into the landfill per year. Publisher of Tumbler Ridge News, Loraine Funk, did not like those numbers. With the growing movement across British Columbia and Canada, to make businesses and homes more environmentally friendly, Loraine decided now was the time for Tumbler Ridge News to make some changes.

The initial idea of an elastic band to wrap the newspaper seemed like an easy change. But once research had begun, elastic bands are not what one would think. Most elastic bands are made of synthetic materials and carbon black, and do not break down remaining in the landfill for a very long time. The elastic bands that Tumbler Ridge News will be using are a unique band made of 90% rubber, a natural material and therefore completely biodegradable.

One may ask, ?How will our newspaper remain dry during the wet weather that we have come to appreciate in our northern town?? That too is going to change. Residents will be given the option to purchase a ?Newspaper Tube?. A newspaper tube is a light tube attached to the side of your home with minimal effort to install. Powell River Peak News has offered the newspaper tube for the last four years and has yet to receive a complaint. Barb Holt, Distribution Manager at Peak News, thinks the newspaper tube is something that more and more newspaper distributors are looking at. She has received many emails requesting information on the costs and implementation of such a program from towns all over British Columbia. Powell River was the first city in BC to start such a program and offers the sale of newspaper tubes included with the subscription fee of $60 per year.

The newspaper will be taking requests for tubes in advance. Costs can be confirmed when we know what the demand will be (more tubes will cost less than just a few). We will need to have a commitment by October 1st at the latest. We hope to keep costs down to $20 or less. We will need to have your request in writing by either filling out the form on this page, or by emailing mail@tumblerridgenews.com

Loraine is hoping that by the time the snow flies most residents will have their tubes installed and already in use. Carriers will be instructed to ensure that papers are delivered into the new tubes.

This is not the first environmental business decision that Loraine has made regarding reducing landfill waste. Tumbler Ridge News made the decision not to circulate the newspaper to surrounding communities, keeping the newspaper solely in Tumbler Ridge in 1997. For our local newspaper to be distributed to towns such as Fort St John, Chetwynd, Dawson Creek and Hudson Hope, the number of publications would be an estimated 40,000 per week, bringing an unreasonable amount of waste to our landfill.

To reach readers throughout the Peace Region and beyond, Tumbler Ridge News went online in January of 2001, with 12,000 hits a month in the first months. Since then the paper has attracted visitors from all over North America and indeed the world, receiving between 150,000 and 200,000 hits per month. With those numbers, a lot of trees are staying in the ground.

The staff at Tumbler Ridge News would like to thank residents for their continued commitment to the environment by recycling their old newspapers.