Aberdeenshire council has warned householders who repeatedly present contaminated recycling for collection that they risk having their recycling containers removed.
The warning comes as part of a new initiative aimed at tackling recycling contamination at the kerbside. As part of this, collection crews will now visually check each recycling bin for contaminated material before emptying as a matter of course, and those with severe contamination will not be emptied.
Aberdeenshire collects recyclable waste including paper, card, metal tins and cans, foil, food and drink cartons and plastic bottles, pots, tubs and trays commingled in blue-lidded wheeled containers, on alternate weeks to residual waste. The council also offers a weekly food waste caddy collection service.
Under the new campaign, households consistently presenting severely contaminated bins will be offered advice and support to properly separate their waste. Those who ignore that advice run the risk of having their recycling bin removed, the council said.
“Moderately contaminated bins”, will be emptied and an orange tag will be attached, providing information to the householder on how to properly use the recycling service.
Any bins not emptied will have to wait until the next scheduled collection day to be emptied, provided “the offending material has been removed”.
The council’s Infrastructure Services Committee (ISC) approved the kerbside collection policy and procedures last year, including guidance on how to deal with contaminated bins.
This included changes to its recycling centres earlier this month, which saw two centres close but those remaining open for longer, in an effort to boost recycling (see letsrecycle.com story).
It stated that any non-recyclable material placed into the recycling bin is classed as ‘contamination’, which could spoil the recyclates in any load. “The recycling reprocessors may then reject whole loads as a result,” the council said.
Any rejected loads of recycling are disposed of at an additional cost to the taxpayer, “for which there is no council budget available”.
Commenting on the new system, the council’s head of roads, waste and landscape services, Philip McKay, said: “Sending waste to landfill costs more than double the amount it costs to recycle and tackling the levels of contamination in kerbside bins is intended to reduce the amount of recyclates sent to landfill.
“We will be enforcing the procedures in a staggered rollout, tackling problem routes first. This will allow crews to get used to the new procedures without any severe implications for the collection schedule.”
Aberdeenshire council, which serves around 260,000 residents, has a recycling rate of 43.7%, but it says services currently available should allow a rate of more than 70%.
It recently awarded Enva Scotland a contract to handle and sort mixed recyclable waste from households, recycling centres and commercial premises.
The contract runs for 12-months up to the end of February 2020 and will see Enva Scotland handle approximately 15,500 tonnes. As part of the agreement Enva will process the waste at its Linwood materials recycling facility.
The post Aberdeenshire launches recycling contamination crackdown appeared first on letsrecycle.com.
Source: letsrecycle.com Waste Managment