Global Recycling Day and BC Used Oil Management Association’s Role in the Circular Economy


BC Used Oil Management Association (BCUOMA), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the collection and recycling of used motor oil, oil filters, oil containers, used antifreeze and antifreeze containers in British Columbia has been establishing used oil material and by-product recycling programs across the province for over 20 years.

Through partnerships with local and regional governments, indigenous communities, registered processors and collectors, and public recycling facilities, these free-to-the-public programs help to achieve sustainability, circular economies, CO2 reductions, carbon offsets and zero waste and pollution prevention objectives, such as:

  • environmental: products are diverted from waste and recycled infinitely, re-entering the market as the same functional products;
  • economic: all of the collection and a significant amount of the processing is done within the province;
  • Social: supporting Indigenous and remote communities in British Columbia with managing waste and providing jobs.

BCUOMA-registered collectors pick up used oil from across the province and transport it to a refinery for processing, including one located in North Vancouver. Once there, the used oil is re-refined and turned back into new motor oil. The re-refined oil is available for purchase by consumers again, through wholesalers and retailers in British Columbia. Using re-refined base oils reduces the carbon footprint without sacrificing quality or performance, requiring fewer resources compared to oil manufactured without recycled content. This closed-loop process allows processors to produce oils that are consistent in meeting or even exceeding industry specifications – without drilling for new crude oil.

The BCUOMA program and its partners are an example of how a regulated Extended Producer Responsibility program can support private sector innovation, and use proven technologies to develop economic growth, and support a circular economy in British Columbia.

Source: BC Used Oil Management Association (BCUOMA)

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