Blue Box Recycling

The Town of Comox and Recycle BC entered into a partnership for the collection of recycling from curbside blue boxes. Recycle BC is a non-profit organization that is responsible for residential recycling programs in many areas across BC, either directly or by working with local governments, First Nations, private companies and not-for-profit organizations.



The Comox Valley Waste Management Centre, which is managed by the Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD_advised the Town that effective January 1, 2021 the area landfill will be closed on all recognized statutory holidays. As a result, the Town of Comox 2022 waste collection schedule has changed for both residents and businesses that receive curbside collection, as well as for those residents and businesses that have frontend container collection services directly from Emterra Environmental.

If you are a resident, business or strata manager that receives curbside pick up: Your schedule started on a different day the first full week of January 2022, and then will change nine (9) times throughout the year as a result of the above-noted closures. To view the 2022 Curbside Waste Collection Schedule, click here. Find your Zone area and colour on the map, and then look for the corresponding dates on the calendar.

If you are a business or strata manager that receives frontend container collection services: You may need to reschedule an alternate date with Emterra Environmental, if you have pick up dates that fall on a statutory holiday, or wait until the next scheduled pick up date for collection. If you have questions or wish to address rescheduling that may be required, please contact Emterra Environmental (250) 336-8066.

For additional information on the collection schedule changes and Frequently Asked Questions, click here.

Acceptable Materials

Town of Comox residents can now recycle even more paper and product packaging in their curbside recycling collection.

New materials include:

  • Empty aerosol cans
  • Aseptic or Tetrapak boxes for soups and sauces
  • Milk cartons
  • Frozen dessert boxes
  • Plastic clamshells for baked goods, fruit and eggs
  • Plastic and paper cups
  • Spiral-wound cans – e.g. for frozen juice, chips

Many other plastics are now acceptable:

  • Empty single-use coffee and tea pods; remove lids and do not include lids with recycling
  • Rigid plastic packaging for toys, toothbrushes, batteries, etc; remove paper backing from the plastic and recycle it too
  • Plastic garden pots and trays for bedding plants, seedlings, vegetable plants, etc.
  • Microwavable bowls and cups

Material continued to be allowed in blue boxes include:

  • Plastic jugs with screw tops used for milk, cooking oil, laundry detergent and fabric softener, cleaning solutions, cleaning products, body care products, windshield washer fluid, etc.
  • Metal food containers – tins and lids.
  • Aluminium foil wrap and foil take-out containers, pie plates, etc.
  • Gable-end cartons – such as milk containers
  • Mixed paper – junk mail, newspapers, magazines, stationery, envelopes, telephone books
  • Shredded paper – put shredded paper in paper or clear plastic bag in blue box; this is the only time plastic bags are allowed
  • Boxboard/cardboard – larger pieces should be folded/flattened and placed under the blue box
  • Plastic bottles with screw caps, spray pump, or pull-up tops for food, dish soap, mouthwash, shampoos, conditioners and other personal care products, pills and vitamins, house and automotive cleaners, laundry products, etc.
  • Plastic jars with wide mouths and screw-top lids for peanut butter, jam, nuts, condiments, vitamins and supplements, personal care products, etc.
  • Plastic black-bottom trays and clear tops for deli chicken, single-serve meals, prepared foods, baked goods, housewares, and hardware such as screws or picture hangers, etc.
  • Plastic tubs and lids for food such as margarine and spreads, dairy products such as yogurt, cottage cheese, sour cream, ice cream, etc.
  • Plastic pails less than 25L for laundry detergent, ice cream, pet food, etc.

Items not acceptable in blue boxes include:

  • Glass bottles and jars – accepted at the Comox Return Centre at 678 Anderton Road
  • Foam packaging (e.g., Styrofoam) is accepted at the Comox Return Centre
  • Plastic bags and over-wrap (e.g. the plastic film on styrofoam food trays) - are accepted at the Comox Return Centre
  • Juice “drinking boxes” – are accepted at the Comox Return Centre
  • Hardcover or paperback books – they should be sold or donated

Oops Stickers:

The Town will begin tagging blue boxes that contain unacceptable items with an "oops sticker" as shown. In the beginning, all items in your blue box will continue to be collected. Homes who repeatedly include unacceptable items may find these items, or their entire bin, left behind. Please familiarize yourself with what is and isn't acceptable, and call or email if you have any questions.

If your curbside blue box contains items that are not accepted, you may find an “oops!” sticker that looks like this, on collection day:

How to pack a Blue Box

Place all recyclables loosely into the blue box – no need to sort.

  • Tip #1: Consolidate
    Reduce the volume of your recycling by flattening boxes and crumpled packing or wrapping paper, and stacking like-containers, such as yogurt tubs, holiday party trays, or egg cartons. In addition, slide lids into empty tin food cans and squeeze the can to flatten it so it takes up less space and reduces sharp edges. Gable top milk or soup cartons and plastic milk jugs can also be flattened before adding these to your container recycling.
  • Tip #2: Flatten cardboard
    Cardboard is one item that does not have to go into your recycling container(s); it can be stacked beside or between your collection boxes if you have more than one. Flatten and cut large boxes down to a reasonable size, and stack them in a manner that ensures they will not blow away.
  • Tip #3: Packing blue boxes for a windy day
    Place large flattened cardboard securely underneath or between your recycling boxes, or place flattened cardboard inside one cardboard box. Place heavier items on top of lighter items. Stack your recycling boxes to prevent papers from blowing away. Put your recycling boxes out for collection on the morning of collection day rather than the night before.
  • Tip #4: Use additional containers
    Don’t overpack your blue box. Get additional containers to take up “overflow”. If your blue box is full, extra recyclables can be placed in any other open container next to the blue box –ensure that these additional containers do not exceed the basic dimensions of the blue box and remember the weight limit on each container of 35 pounds.

When are Blue Boxes collected in Comox?

  • Bi-weekly (every two weeks) collection occurs on garbage pickup day all year round. You can recycle an unlimited quantity.
  • Have your blue box recycling at the curb by 8 am.

More Information

For a complete list of acceptable and unacceptable curbside recyclable materials, as well as information on what is accepted at recycling depots, please see the information below.
Recycling Fact Sheet
Recycling FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
RecycleBC Detailed List
Recycling Changes
RecycleBC Video

Questions/concerns should be directed to:

Town of Comox at 250 339-2202

Approved Recycle BC recycling depots:

Comox Return Centre – 678 Anderton Road, Comox BC | 250 339-0059

  • Comox Return Centre accepts all materials in Recycle BC’s residential packaging and printed paper recycling program, including non-deposit glass bottles and jars, “soft plastics” (plastic bags and overwrap), foam packaging, mixed paper (such as newsprint, cardboard and boxboard), and mixed containers (such as metal containers, plastic containers, spiral wound cans, coffee cups and soup cartons). Hours of operation 9:00 am – 5:00 pm Monday to Thursday, and 9:00 am – 4:30 pm Friday and Saturday.
  • The centre provides refunds for all beverage containers including juice, water, pop, wine, and spirits sold in plastic, metal, glass or Tetra pak containers. Please rinse and remove lids, but leave labels on. In addition, this is the Comox Valley’s Paint and Paint Products return centre.

Courtenay Return-It Depot - 493 Putledge Road / 250 338-6013

Comox Valley Waste Management - 3699 Bevan Road, Cumberland / 250 334-6016 ­– (small appliances)

Return-It – (electronics)

Recyclepedia (Recycling Council of British Columbia)

Journey Recycling Program – (office paper) | Phone: 250 338-5884

BC Recycles – Information on recycling just about anything anywhere in BC

Recycling Hotline: 1-800-667-4321