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RECYCLING 3...WITH YOU EVERY STEP OF THE WAY
‘Tis the season to sort your recycling!
Christmas is undoubtedly a wonderful time of year and many people’s favourite holiday, but it is also one of the most wasteful. Each year the festive period creates a huge rise in the volume of waste materials being disposed of by UK households and businesses.
Every year at Christmas, Brits send more than one billion Christmas cards, use 227,000 miles of wrapping paper, consume 189 million batteries, and discard around 500 tonnes of Christmas lights and 3,000 tonnes of turkey packaging. While it’s hard to imagine the holidays without traditions like giving presents and enjoying gargantuan helpings of Christmas dinner, it’s no surprise that all this merry excess creates a whole heap of extra rubbish.
Indeed, the festive period sees a 30% increase in the volume of rubbish produced and discarded during compared to the rest of the year (equating to an extra 3 million tonnes of waste).
The good news is that much of this material can be recycled through your local authority collections. To help households to maximise the quality of their recycling and enable them to minimise their environmental impact during the holiday period, Casepak has produced a handy guide to Christmas Recycling Dos and Don’ts.
All we want for Christmas is…
- Jars, bottles, cans and tins: glass and aluminium cans can be recycled indefinitely so long as they are clean and dry, so please ensure these items make it into your recycling bin!
- Plain wrapping paper: remember the ‘scrunch test’ – if the paper stays scrunched up it can be recycled. However, paper with a lot of glitter or shiny film can pose a problem, so if in doubt please place it in your black bag waste.
- Christmas cards: Cards, envelopes and catalogues can all be recycled, but again please don’t try to recycle cards with lots of glitter, as the glitter can clog up our recycling machinery. Instead, cut them up into gift tags for Christmas 2020!
- Cardboard packaging: all cardboard boxes and packaging can be recycled, but please make sure to remove any plastic bags from inside the box. Don’t forget to take out any receipts, instructions, guarantees or warranties for your gifts too!
- Gift bags can also be recycled, but please remove any tags and rope/string handles first, which should be placed in your general waste.
Bah Humbug! to the following materials which, unfortunately, cannot be recycled via your household collections yet…
- Batteries must not be placed in your recycling bin, but please do collect old batteries and recycle them at your local recycling centre or supermarket collection point.
- Food waste is a big no-no as it causes serious contamination and can lead to an entire load being rejected. Many local authorities operate separate food waste recycling collections, but if yours doesn’t then please place food waste in your black bin. You may like to consider composting certain items, like vegetable peelings, eggshells and tea bags/coffee grounds.
- Disposable plates, napkins and cutlery: as these items are likely to be contaminated with food waste they cannot be recycled and should be placed in your black bin waste. Alternatively, look out for compostable options as a more sustainable option than plastic.
- Old electrical items and toys: everyone loves a new gadget or toy for Christmas, but please don’t dispose of your old items in the recycling. Ideally, anything with a plug or that takes batteries should be recycled at your local recycling centre to ensure the valuable components are recovered and can be reused, or items can be donated to your local charity shop.
- Unwanted clothing: whether you’re getting rid of old clothes (or a horrendous new Christmas jumper), textiles cannot be recycled via your household recycling collection. Instead, donate unwanted clothes to a charity or recycle them at your local recycling centre.
- Christmas trees: many local authorities collect natural Christmas trees in the weeks after Christmas, so look out for information about collections or recycling points in your area. Alternatively, you can use your garden waste collection or take the tree to your local recycling centre. Artificial trees should always be taken to your local recycling centre, as should any unwanted fairy lights.
- Polystyrene/Styrofoam: this type of plastic is not something we can recycle at our MRF and such material should be taken to your local recycling centre or tip.
- Used nappies: we tend to see an increase in soiled nappies entering the recycling stream over the festive period. Please remember that any used nappies or sanitary items cause huge contamination issues and cannot be recycled. Instead, please place these items in your general waste bin.
Happy Christmas from team Casepak!