Friday 21 December 2012
CLEAR, clean bubble wrap and other polythene packaging can now be recycled at Longue Hougue thanks to a joint initiative between Public Services and Mayside Recycling.
The new initiative has been launched as a trial in the run up to Christmas, which Public Services' Recycling Officer Tina Norman-Ross said was an ideal time of year.
'With all of the Christmas presents coming into the island there is a plethora of packaging. Often this combines cardboard, polystyrene and polythene, which includes bubble wrap,' she said.
'We have had recycling facilities in place for all the cardboard and polystyrene for years now, and islanders are well used to using those. However until now all the polythene and bubble wrap material have had to go in the bin.'
Polythene and other thin film packaging are among the items islanders should not put in the plastic recycling bring banks. This is because these materials can get tangled in the automated sorting systems, and cause mechanical breakdowns.
In addition, many thin film materials, such as the covers on ready meals, are often degradable and therefore unsuitable for recycling. However polythene can be recycled, provided it is clean and kept separate from other plastics.
Mayside Recycling has provided a compactor bin at Longue Hougue for polythene, which is bulky to collect.
The company's Operations Director, Liam Bourgaize, said it hoped this would further reduce contamination in the bring banks.
'If polythene is placed in the bin with household plastics it can cause serious problems with the processing operation, so it is very important we keep it out. With this new initiative, islanders will now be to recycle it the next time they make a trip to Longue Hougue,' he said.
'We do have to stress we only want clear, clean material, because the market for polythene is very sensitive as far as dirt and other contamination are concerned. We also can't take cling film or the clear plastic film on ready meals, because those are often a different plastic altogether.'
The latest trial follows the recent introduction of a recycling facility at Longue Hougue for rigid plastic items, such as washing up bowls or children's toys. This month Public Services also relaunched the facilities at the bring banks, which can now accept most plastic packaging.
Public Services Minister Deputy Paul Luxon said it was now possible to recycle most plastic items provided they were appropriately sorted prior to being dropped off.
'We have seen big growth in plastics recycling this year, and coupled with the expansion of all these new facilities we hope to see a significant increase in the amount recycled. That means less ending up in Mont Cuet.'
In 2011, 250 tonnes of household plastic packaging was collected through the bring banks. However this is expected to increase by around 20% this year, which in addition to the new Longue Hougue facility should see more than 100 extra tonnes of plastic recycled in 2012.
Bubble wrap - Before you recycle it, reuse it!
- Winterize patio plants by wrapping the pots in bubble wrap. Make sure the wrap extends a few inches above the top edge of the pot. Secure with duct tape.
- Protect produce by lining the crisper drawer in the fridge with bubble wrap to cushion fruits and vegetables and prevent bruising. Make clean-up easier, too, by simply replacing it with a new piece.
- Attach bubble wrap to the back of picture frames. The wrap's thickness adds space between the wall and the back of the frame to reduce scratches on the wall surface.
- Cover a vehicle's windscreen at night with the bubble wrap for a barrier to frost. Removing the wrap should reduce the time needed for scraping in the morning.
- Stress busting - pop the bubbles - it can still be recycled!
- Guaranteed to tire out your kids - let them jump on it....
- Staff at Longue Hougue can advise on what plastics can be left there.
- Household plastic packaging, e.g. bottles, food containers 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.