A new recycling campaign Let’s Sort Out Waste’ has hit the ground running. It aims to help us change what we put in our recycling bins and also reduce the amount of plastic we buy.
Hutt City Council’s Manager of Sustainability and Resilience, Jörn Scherzer says a lot of people think that when they put plastic in a recycling bin that the problem is taken care of. But that’s not always the case.
“We can’t afford to keep ‘wish-cycling’ and hoping that everything in the recycling goes to a good place. Most plastics take centuries to decompose. They can remain in the environment for years and have a devastating impact on the planet, “he says.
“There’s less demand internationally for some categories of plastic so many local authorities including Hutt City have stopped collecting them for recycling. Our recycling campaign will help people identify what they can and can’t recycle. The next challenge is for us all to find ways to stop using these plastics wherever possible. Businesses and manufacturers are part of that solution too, and we’ll be talking to them about possible alternatives.”
The plastics that are no longer being collected for recycling are those numbered 3 to 7 (they usually have a number on the bottom). That includes things like some biscuit trays, blister packs, bread and produce bags, containers for yoghurt, deli foods and takeaways, Styrofoam cups and plates and some meat trays.
Paper and cardboard, metal and aluminium cans and glass will still be collected as usual along with plastics numbered 1 and 2 – that’s things like water, juice and milk bottles.