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Room for Improvement in Recycling

Room for Improvement in Recycling

Most of us agree that recycling is a good idea, but not everyone is taking the time to separate their rubbish correctly.

The Mackenzie District’s wheelie bin system has been operating for nearly two years. But there is still too much un-recyclable rubbish being placed in yellow recycling bins, according to council solid waste manager Angie Taylor.

“Almost a quarter of what the council collects from yellow wheelie bins is being dumped as rubbish,” she says.

This rubbish not only includes items that shouldn’t go into the yellow bin, like food waste, but also recyclable containers that still contain food. All bottles and containers need to be washed before going in the yellow bin, including milk bottles, jars, yoghurt containers and tin cans.

“We can only recycle clean containers. Not only are unwashed containers sent to landfill, but they can also contaminate clean recycling which then also has to be dumped as rubbish. It’s a waste to dump so much and this creates a cost to both the council and to ratepayers,” she says.

“It’s in everyone’s best interest to recycle as much as possible, but we need your help to make recycling work.”

The Mackenzie District Council deals with about 16 tonnes of recycling each month, including both wheelie bin items and recycling dropped off at the Resource Recovery Parks.

But also, 4.2 tonnes of waste from yellow bins goes into landfill each month instead of being recycled. “This is what we want to reduce,” Ms Taylor says.

Roadside audits of wheelie bins are currently taking place. If your bin does not contain the right recyclables, it won’t be collected.

“If you are not sure what can be recycled, check the sticker under the lid of your yellow wheelie bin. And remember, all glass must go in the blue glass crate.”

If you have any questions about waste collection or recycling contact Angie Taylor on 0800 685 8514 or angie@mackenzie.govt.nz.


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