Expansion of council plastic containers recovery
3 October 2006
Expansion of the plastic containers recovery service by six councils is great news because it means residents can recycle more.
The decision taken by recycling company Streetsmart Ltd and six councils to start kerbside collections of previously non-recovered plastic containers is exactly what New Zealanders want according to a group dedicated to reducing the amount of packaging which gets sent to landfill.
Imagine getting together people from some of New Zealand’s leading brands, Local Government New Zealand, the Ministry for the Environment, packaging manufacturers and recycling operators and challenging them to reduce the amount of packaging waste which goes to landfill each year. The Environmental Beverage Action Group (EBAG) was set up to do just that as part of a general commitment under the Packaging Accord (2004).
Spokesperson Sharon Jereb, Environmental Advisor at DB Breweries, welcomed the announcement that six councils would be extending their kerbside recycling collection to include all plastic containers from the bathroom, laundry and kitchen that are marked clearly as being grade 5 plastic (polypropylene).
“We are delighted that Auckland City, Manukau City, Rodney District, Papakura District, Thames Coromandel District and Tasman District councils are offering this new service through their collector Streetsmart Ltd and encourage other councils to do the same.”
Whilst grades 1 and 2 plastics have been picked up for some time, commonly used packaging including margarine, ice cream, honey and some drink containers which use grade 5 plastics have been excluded.
Whilst New Zealand consumption of plastic packaging has increased by 6% in the past year it is now being recovered at double this rate. Overall plastics recovery rates have increased to 21% leaving the plastics sector well placed to reach its Packaging Accord recovery target of 23% by 2009.
Notes about the Environmental Beverages Action Group (EBAG)
EBAG is a cross sector working group which comprises brand owners and retailers (Coca Cola Amatil; DB Breweries; Foodstuffs; Fonterra; Frucor), manufacturers of packaging (Amcor PET technologies, Visy, Alto Plastics) Local Government New Zealand, The Packaging Council, Ministry for the Environment and Recycling Operators of New Zealand.
Streetsmart Ltd offers kerbside recycling collection and processing facilities to Councils and industry and operates resource recovery parks.