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News / Full Kerbside collections to resume for Thames Coromandel, with a change in plastic recycling - only plastic types 1 and 2 will be accepted

Full Kerbside collections to resume for Thames Coromandel, with a change in plastic recycling - only plastic types 1 and 2 will be accepted

Full Kerbside collections to resume for Thames Coromandel, with a change in plastic recycling - only plastic types 1 and 2 will be accepted

Posted May 12, 2020
Council Matters

Full Kerbside collections to resume for Thames Coromandel, with a change in plastic recycling - only plastic types 1 and 2 will be accepted.

Following the announcement of New Zealand moving to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 on Thursday, TCDC is working to resume full Kerbside rubbish and recycling collections with blue Council bags, recycling in wheelie bins and glass in crates.

When regular collections resume one major change that will be implemented is that only plastic types 1 and 2 will be accepted in wheelie bins and at TCDC Refuse Transfer Stations.

Any plastic that doesn’t have a number 1 or 2 in a recycling triangle on it should go into the general rubbish.

For the first two weeks of the full fortnightly recycling collections, all recycling except glass will be going to landfill while the sorting centre in Kopu is brought back online.

If you’ve been storing plastic, waiting for recycling collections to resume, now is the time to put it out for collection, or take if to your nearest Refuse Transfer Station for disposal.

Look for the number on the bottom of the plastic.Many things made of plastic have a triangle made of arrows with a number inside it. That number is the type of plastic. If there’s a 1 or 2 inside the triangle, rinse it out and put it in your wheelie bin for collection. Discard the lid. Anything smaller than a yoghurt pottle is too small to be recycled.

Any plastic that doesn’t have a 1 or 2 on it should go into the rubbish.

Please don’t try to ‘wishcycle’ by putting plastics 3 to 7, or plastics with no number, in your wheelie bin. This will contaminate the batch and excessive contamination like this will result in the entire truckload having to go in the landfill.

Why the change now?
The change to collecting only plastics 1 and 2 has nothing to do with COVID-19.Plastics numbered 1 and 2 can be recycled within New Zealand but types 3 to 7 have to be shipped overseas for processing and are no longer accepted by most global markets.

A number of initiatives have been investigated across New Zealand for recycling plastics 3 to 7, however the viability of this remains largely impractical, so these plastics will now be going to landfill in New Zealand for now.

Recycling sent overseas can end up as someone else’s rubbish. Shipping recycling overseas also incurs a large carbon cost and can be processed in countries with significantly different employment practices to New Zealand – potentially putting those workers at risk handling refuse in unsafe conditions.For these reasons, it’s best that we handle all our recycling here in New Zealand.

Supermarkets and retailers are being urged to phase out their use of plastics 3 to 7.

TCDC is also asking that people on the Coromandel avoid buying products that use non-recyclable plastic where possible, in order to lessen the amount of plastic going into landfill.

What about plastic bags?
​​​​​​Soft plastics like bread bags and cling film, or any plastic that is soft and can be scrunched up such as some food packaging, can’t be recycled in your Kerbside collection.