Recycling saves landfill space, preserves natural resources and in many cases also saves energy and water.
In Tasmania, almost everything collected through the kerbside recycling service goes interstate, and sometimes overseas, for reprocessing into new products. Unfortunately a portion of the recyclables collected in Tasmania is contaminated. Contaminated recyclables are rejected at the sorting facility and sent to landfill.
Contamination occurs when you place items in your recycling bin that the recycling system cannot process, for example plastic bags or nappies. The fewer contaminants there are, the easier it is to sort your recyclables which saves time, energy, resources and money.
Rethink Waste can help significantly reduce this problem and improve our recycling record and schools are a great place to start!
In Tasmania, these items can be accepted for recycling in standard council-provided collections:
- Clean paper and cardboard – includes office paper, cardboard boxes and packaging, egg cartons, telephone books, newspaper, pizza boxes (clean), magazines, pamphlets and paper bags
- Glass bottles and jars (empty)
- Metals – including aluminium cans, steel cans, tin-plated steel cans, aluminium foil, paint tins and aerosol cans (all empty)
- Plastic containers and bottles (empty with lids off)
In Tasmania these items are not accepted for recycling in standard council-provided collections:
- Computers and TVs (e-waste)
- Gas bottles
- Hazardous recyclables such as batteries (car or domestic) or compact fluorescent lamps
- Plastic bags including plastic bread bags and plastic barrier bags
- Polystyrene such as foam packaging
- Sharps and syringes
Did you know?
You may have noticed that not all recyclable plastic containers display the PIC (Plastic Identification Code) triangle – the symbol most of us call the recycling triangle. This is because the triangle and corresponding number are used to indicate what plastic was used to make the container, not whether the container is recyclable. However, all plastic packaging containers can now be recycled as part of the normal kerbside recycling collection service offered by most Tasmanian councils. While soft plastic (including plastic bags and plastic film and wrap) are not accepted in any Tasmanian kerbside recycling collection, most major supermarkets now accept clean, flexible plastic, such as plastic bags, for recycling.
For larger items or items of a different nature than described here, contact your local council to find out details of special collection services offered in your area.