Wyre Forest District Council is asking residents for their help in reducing the amount of recycling that is going to landfill.
Recycling figures show that some residents are putting the incorrect items into their recycling bin which in turn is causing entire vehicle loads to be rejected and sent direct to landfill.
Nappies, food waste, dog poo and carpet are just a few of the things Council officers have been finding in the green recycling bins. If these bins are emptied into a collection vehicle it can lead to the whole load of recycling being rejected at the processing plant and having to be sent to landfill. This throws away all the work most residents have done sorting their waste and costs the Council more money in transport and landfill costs.
The authority sends approximately 10,000 tonnes of waste to be recycled every year. This is around 30 per cent of the total waste collected, however an increasing amount of the vehicle loads are being rejected by the recycling centre they are sent to for sorting and processing. The most common reason for this is people putting general waste that should go in black bins in their recycling bins. Officers are also finding bins with normal waste at the bottom, covered by items which can be recycled at the top of the bin.
Councillor Ian Hardiman, Wyre Forest District Council’s Cabinet Member for Operational Services said:
“Our residents have worked really hard to help us increase our recycling rates but just lately we have found that more and more green bins are containing general waste which contaminates the whole load. This means it cannot be recycled. It costs more than £100 per tonne of waste to tip at landfill, so this is creating the Council environmental and financial problems.
“It’s clear that some people are using the green recycling bins as normal rubbish black bins and this is a real problem. According to our latest figures, around one recycling bin in every six has items in which should not be in there. Just one recycling bin mixed with normal rubbish can mean a whole lorry load of recycling is rejected. I do believe people are trying hard to recycle as much as possible, but if you’re unsure about what can be recycled, or find the service difficult please get in touch.”
Residents should not place general waste into their recycling bins. The green bins should only be used for clean and loose recyclable materials. Examples of recyclable items include tins, glass, plastic bottles/containers, paper, cardboard and cartons.
Another common problem is people putting plastic bags and bottle tops in their recycling bin. These can not be recycled via the kerbside collections. Other non-recyclable items include textiles, black plastic, foil and books (hardback). A full list of the items which can and can’t be recycled is on the Council’s recycling webpage.
Members of the waste team will be putting stickers and message tags on recycling bins. This will alert residents that they are putting the wrong items in their recycling bin and stop their efforts going to waste.
Recycling bins that are repeatedly tagged and not resolved will not be emptied. Once the problem has been sorted the bin will be collected on the next available recycling round.