Residents congratulated for recycling right

Published: 23 Oct 2019

Mackay residents “oughtta be congratulated”.

The pat on the back comes with the latest waste stream audit results showing a continued decrease in contamination in kerbside recycling bins.

Council has engaged environmental consultancy firm EnviroCom to conduct a biannual waste stream assessment since 2012.

The latest assessment was undertaken at the Paget Waste Transfer Station and the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) over a three-day period in June.

Cr Karen May said residents continued to show a greater awareness of what can and can’t be recycled.

“Just 9.6 percent of waste at the MRF was found to be contamination, which is below the average rate of 10.7 percent of assessments since 2012,’’ she said.

“The assessment has shown us, however, that some residents are still confused about what items can go in their yellow-lidded bins.

“While items such as fluorescent tubes and paint cans are recyclable, they can’t go in the yellow bins as they cause problems for our machinery at the MRF.  They need to be taken to our transfer stations for recycling, rather than placed in kerbside bins.”

Cr May said there was still a rate of 16.4 percent of recyclable materials found in kerbside general waste bins.

“These items, including paper, glass, plastics and metals, could have been recovered for recycling, reducing the amount of rubbish going to our landfill.”

Residents’ uptake of the Queensland Government’s Container Recovery Scheme (Containers for Change) has meant there was a decrease in those eligible containers in kerbside domestic collection.

The top five contaminants found in recycling bins during the recent audit were:

  1. Non-recyclable plastics
  2. Appliances
  3. Food
  4. Textiles/Clothing
  5. Wood and furniture.

Residents are encouraged to continue to recycle right and visit council’s website for further tips.

The items that can be placed in your yellow-lidded recycling bin include:

  • Paper, cardboard and magazines
  • Aluminium cans, steel cans and aerosols
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Plastic bottles and container with numbers 1 to 6.

Council also encourages residents to remove the lids off their recyclable items and rinse them out to produce a quality product for market.