Paint Recycling Program
Eligible Products and Fees
Following is the list of eligible products in Alberta’s Paint and Paint Container Recycling Program and the environmental fees charged on the sale of new paint and paint containers effective April 1, 2021.
- 100ml to 250ml - $0.25
- 251ml to 1L - $0.50
- 1.01L to 5L - $1.00
- 5.01L to 23L - $2.25
- Water-based paint e.g. latex, acrylic
- Oil and solvent-based (alkyd)
- Chalk-based paint (as of January 1, 2020)
- Craft and artist paints e.g. tempura (as of January 1, 2020)
- Drywall paint
- Enamels (standard single component)
- Epoxies (pre-catalyzed)
- Ink-based paints (as of January 1, 2020)
- Metal paints:
- Rust preventative coatings
- Milk-based paints (as of January 1, 2020)
- pre-catalyzed and nitrocellulose
- Shellac and shellac-based products
- Stains and finishes:
- Barn and fence
- Porch and patio
- Wood finishing oils and stains
- Concrete sealer
- Driveway paints or sealers
- Elastomeric coatings (water-based only)
- Encapsulant coatings
- Liquid block filler (as of January 1, 2020)
- Masonry Sealer
- Stain blocking paint
- Water repellent sealers
- Stone effects coatings
- Stucco paint
- Swimming pool coating (single component)
- Textured paint
- Truck bed coating
- Deck cleaners (as of January 1, 2020)
- Dry fog coating (as of January 1, 2020)
- Fire-retardent/resitive coating e.g. Pink Shield
- Marine paint and enamel (non anti-fouling)
- Scenic, movie set paint
- Strippers for paint, coatings and wallpaper removal (as of January 1, 2020)
- Traffic marking paint
- Tree marking paint
- Wood preservatives (non-creosote) (as of January 1, 2020)
- Aerosol paint (spray paint), all sizes - $0.25
- Aerosols/Spray Paints:
- Paint-based aerosols
- Blank aerosol cans
- All paints less than 100 ml or greater than 23 L in size
- Acid stains
- Automotive paints (non-aerosol)
- Battery terminal protectors and battery cleaners
- Brushes, rags and rollers
- Corrosive products
- Industrial coatings
- Heat reactive coatings
- High-temperature coatings
- Impacted-immersion coatings
- Thermoplastic rubber, mastic or bituminous coatings
- Nuclear coatings
- Quick-dry coatings (primers, enamels)
- Two-part or multi-component coatings requiring catalyzing reaction
- Please see the industrial paint definition.
- Rubber coatings
- Thermoplastic rubber
- Liquid rubber sealant
- Tar-based and bituminous coatings
- Roof patch tars and greases
- Tints and colourants
The following products may not be accepted for recycling:
- Bulging or leaking paint cans
- Unidentifiable paint or containers
- Paint not stored in original containers
Call your municipal collection site to see if these products will be accepted as hazardous waste.
More Detailed Information
For more detailed information please see the current Table of Fees for Paint Products, published April 1, 2021.
Prior to 2008, Albertans took their paint to a household hazardous waste roundup for disposal. However, latex paint can be remade into new paint and oil-based paint can be used as a fuel source in the energy recovery process. Since April 1, 2008, home owners and painting contractors alike have flocked to Alberta’s paint recycling program because they want their leftover paint and paint containers safely recycled instead of incinerated.
Latex and oil-based paint, varnishes and stains as well the containers they're packaged in - metal and aerosol cans and plastic pails. Please visit this link for the complete list.
Alberta’s registered Paint Processors pick up the paint from municipal collection sites and businesses across the province, and take it to their facilities where it is separated and packaged for shipment. Processing of paint and paint containers is handled by downstream processors approved by Alberta Recycling.
Latex paint is recycled into usable paint, the majority of it processed and then sold right here in Alberta for environmentally conscious purchasers. Oil based paint is most often used in fuel blends to provide alternative fuel sources. Aerosol containers, paint cans and plastic pails are recycled as metals and plastics.
Albertans are doing a great job at it. To date 28.2 million litres of paint and 6.2 million spray paint cans have been recycled since the Program started in 2008.
First and foremost, certain paints contain chemicals that pose a threat to the environment. And secondly, leftover paint can be turned into new paint and the metal and plastics containers are recycled into new products.
The paint is sorted into latex and oil. Latex paint is recycled into usable paint, the majority of it processed and then sold right here in Alberta for environmentally conscious purchasers. Oil-based paint is most often used in fuel blends to provide alternative fuel sources. Aerosol containers, paint cans and plastic pails are recycled as metals and plastics.
Yes, the metal and plastic cans, including spray paint cans, can be recycled as well so make sure not to throw them in the garbage but take them to your nearest paint recycling depot.
Check with Renue Recycling in Calgary for a list of distributors of ecocoat paint.
Environmental Fee Info
The environmental fees Albertans pay when purchasing new paint products and containers helps fund the cost to recycle them…
Albertans are some of the of the most dedicated recyclers in the world. Since 2008, Albertans’ have recycled 31.5 million litres of paint. Leftover latex paint is recycled into usable latex, and oil-based paint is used as a fuel source in the energy recovery process. The metal containers are recycled into industrial products such as rebar and the plastic paint ‘buckets’ are shredded and manufactured into new plastic products.