Wednesday 19 September 2012
Public Services is expanding plastics recycling to include a host of everyday household items.
The Longue Hougue Recycling Facility now accepts "rigid plastic", which includes a huge range of items from washing up bowls and buckets to garden furniture and children's toys. Unlike the household plastics collected at the bring banks, these do not have to have a 'number' to indicate the type of material.
The new facility is specifically intended for these more durable household items. Disposable plastic bottles and food packaging should still be dropped off at bring bank sites.
The only plastic objects that cannot now be recycled either through the bring banks or the Longue Hougue facility are heavily contaminated items, such as paint pots, and plastic 'film' products, such as carrier bags, coal sacks, and clear material used to seal food containers.
Such items should not be put in bring banks, as they can prevent other more valuable plastics being recycled.
Public Services Deputy Minister, Deputy Scott Ogier, said the new facility was being introduced at Longue Hougue on a trial basis. If successful it will provide a long term boost for recycling and reduce the amount of waste going to landfill. He said:
"Rigid plastics are often bulky items, so this will have a double benefit of increasing recycling and saving significant space at Mont Cuet. It will also hopefully enable more reuse."
Staff at the Longue Hougue site will put any good quality but unwanted items aside for other islanders to collect, and anything broken or damaged will go into a recycling skip. The material will be shredded locally and sent to a UK reprocessor where it will be washed, cut up into smaller 'flakes', and melted down ready for manufacture into a variety of new products.
As well as providing a boost to the island's recycling target, the Department hopes the new initiative will reduce contamination of the plastic collected at the bring bank sites.
Public Services' recycling officer, Tina Norman-Ross, said the Department could only provide facilities for collecting items for which there was currently a market for the recycled material. She said quality is crucial, therefore it is important to avoid contamination. She said:
"We all want to recycle as much as possible but the market for recycled plastics is for specific types, and in particular high quality material. We see a lot of items going into the bring banks that should not be there. We often get carrier bags and coal sacks, but occasionally items such as pool covers, toilet seats and drain pipes."
"This contamination can affect the price a processor will pay, and could even mean a whole batch being rejected by the processing plant and not recycled. Obviously we want to avoid that."
- Staff at Longue Hougue can advise on what plastics can be left there. Items containing metal or electronic components, unless these can first be removed, should not be put in the plastic skip, but in the separate containers for metals or electrical appliances.
- Household plastics displaying any of the marks below can be recycled at local bring banks:
- 'Expanded' polystyrene - the white packaging material used to protect fragile items and new household goods and electrical appliances - can be recycled at Waitrose/Rohais, Chouet and Longue Hougue.
- Information on all items that can be recycled locally is available online at www.gov.gg/recycling.
Public Services Department: Tina Norman-Ross - Recycling Officer
Tel: 01481 246263