St Nicks

Centre for nature and green living

Recycle week 2017: How ‘not’ to recycle

messy recycling box

It’s Recycle Week 2017 so that means it’s time for Recycling Coordinator Sam to dust off her keyboard once again…

I have written quite a few blogs on waste this year, content on plastics seems popular, as does busting myths. This blog is going to be a bit different.

First of all, let’s be completely clear we want you to recycle. We want you to recycle as much as you physically can after you’ve cut down on wasteful consumerism, refused unnecessary packaging, reused, and composted anything you can.  See how I snuck in the 5 R’s of waste management… Reduce, Refuse, Reuse, Recycle, Rot, you can read more here. Now I know I’m asking a lot, and honestly waste minimisation is a journey, one that I personally researched a lot before taking my first tentative steps (and bullied my co-workers into the same, read about our plastics challenge). Whatever stage of the process you are at (and let me tell you, reading this blog means you are already on that path) if you don’t recycle properly you are just causing more work for yourself. It doesn’t take a lot of effort to do it properly really. Some people believe that recycling isn’t worth it, that it will just end up in landfill, so my team and I have come up with some tips to help you ensure your recycling, is recycled.

The following is a list of the strange and gross we have come across. Don’t try and recycle:

The easiest ways to make sure your recycling is collected is to follow the good recycling guide, rinse as much as possible, squash your cans, plastic and cardboard and try to keep paper and cardboard separate in your box. If you need to get rid of tiny scraps of paper whether it is shredded or you’ve gone for the informal “tear it into pieces” please don’t leave it loose in your box, bag it separately. Bagging the shredding or tiny bits of paper also ensures that it doesn’t blow all over the street.

Thank you!

If items are left in your box, it generally means that we can’t recycle them. If it’s tin lids, scraps of paper obviously we can recycle them, we just can’t actually grab them… You may have noticed our colourful gloves. They are pretty thick and coated in Kevlar in an attempt to protect us from sharp objects and cuts, but they do reduce our dexterity. To ensure your lids are recycled, simply pop them back in a can so we can grab them.

Finally, putting your box out on time in a place that is easily visible from the road is the easiest way to make sure it gets collected. If our vehicle or tricycle has gone past your property and is facing away from it, and your neighbours boxes/baskets/bags are empty, you’ve missed us. However, if you can see us bring it over and we will happily empty it. We are a friendly bunch and want to recycle as much as possible.

We love our jobs, genuinely, we do it because we believe it is worth doing and doing well. If you want to ask us anything we will always take the time for you. If you are late out with your box come and speak to us, chances are we will help you if it’s too heavy, yes we’ll remind you that it needs to be out at 8am but we just want to make sure you have all the information you need to make sure your recycling is recycled. Who knows, maybe you’ll make a new friend. I promise the team aren’t scary.

If you need more motivation to recycle head down to one of our events or just take a stroll in our 24-acre nature reserve. The money we earn from your recycling helps to contribute to the great work St Nicks as a whole is able to do.

I just want to finish by saying thank you to those people that do make an effort, it really does make a difference.

27 September 2017 | Categories: One Planet Living, Waste and recycling | Tags: challenge, contamination, food waste, gross, help, how not to recycle, how to, pizza, query, recycling, St Nicks, York