What Happens to Your Recycling?
Do you ever wonder what happens to your recycling and whether it really gets re-processed into new products? At Wastebusters we are always looking for places that sustainably and properly recycle materials so that we can divert them from landfill.
Some products like scrap metal and car/truck batteries have good value and we can sell them and get a return, so these are free for you to drop off. But others cost us money to send away, more than what they are worth, so we have to charge for them. Check out our up-to-date pricelist for details.
This is what happens to the recycling you drop off to us.
Glass bottles - are colour sorted and sent to Reclaim in Auckland where they arrange for them to be re-manufactured into new glass containers by OI Glass in Penrose, which has been manufacturing glass in New Zealand since 1922.
Plastics numbers 1 and 2 are the highest quality of the plastics and we send them Reclaim in Auckland. From there number 1 plastics go to Flight Plastics in Wellington where they are manufactured into new plastic containers which have no less than 60% recycled plastic in them. Number 2 plastics go to to be made into drainage pipes. Sadly, we don't have anywhere to send the lesser value plastics 3 - 7 at the moment, and these have to go to landfill.
Aluminium cans go to Endless Metals in Auckland for recycling, as do non-ferrous metals. Car batteries and electrical cables also go to Endless Metals.
Tins and other scrap metals go to SIMS Pacific Metals in Auckland.
Polystyrene goes to Abilities Group in Auckland, where it is compacted into bricks and sent to China for manufacturing into other products such as picture frames. Abilities is a non-profit, incorporated society dedicated to enriching the lives of people with disabilities through meaningful work.
Abilities also takes our e-waste for proper recycling. Abilities are holders of a Basel Permit to export printed circuit boards to Japan for processing to extract the precious metals. This reduces the dependency on underground mining for the same resources.
Gas bottles go to Matagas in Auckland.
Clear film is sent to Reclaim in Auckland.
Scrap timber is sent to Green Gorilla in Auckland where it is shredded and sent to Golden Bay Cement in Whangarei for fuel.
Tyres are sent to Waste Management where the metal is stripped out and the tyres are shredded for re-use, some of it in roading.
Fluorescent lamps and tubes are sent to Interwaste in Auckland. Fluorescent lamps contain mercury, a highly toxic waste, which, if disposed of irresponsibly can pollute waterways and damage the environment. Interwaste has developed a unique process for the separation and recycling of mercury.
Silage wrap goes to Plasback where it is manufactured in to Tuffboard, which is a plywood replacement product and can be used in a variety of applications and locations on farm.
Remember, if you sort and compact your load it will be cheaper as we charge by volume.
Paper and cardboard recycling collected from kerbside in Auckland will resume as normal for May, as Auckland Council has now been able to secure an overseas market for up to 4,000 tonnes of mixed paper and cardboard. The markets are volatile, but we will keep you updated.
Whilst we are pleased it won't now be sent to landfill, we still suggest using it at home wherever you can, as sending it overseas for recycling has a big ecological footprint!
Take the advice of Alexandra and her pet sheep: compost it together with your kitchen scraps, line garden beds with it or make crafts, make paper clay, mini journals or use it for building activities with kids.... there are so many uses! Or if you have a wood burner, use it to light your fire over winter.
Auckland's kerbside collected paper and cardboard recycling is currently going to landfill
because the paper mills in India where it was supposed to go for recycling have closed as a result of COVID-19.
What else can you do with it? Here are some ideas: compost it together with your kitchen scraps, line garden beds with it or make crafts, make paper clay, mini journals or use it for building activities with kids.... there are so many uses! Or if you have a wood burner, use it to light your fire over winter.
If you can, avoid accepting paper bags - instead use your re-usable cloth bags when shopping and wash them. Just throw them in the washing machine and they will be completely safe to re-use, even in the COVID-19 environment.
Paper and cardboard produce large amounts of methane in the anaerobic landfill environment (i.e. no oxygen). It’s a little known fact that the methane production from paper and cardboard in landfill is actually much higher than from food waste. The bottom line is that we don’t want paper and cardboard going to landfill.
We encourage you to do what you can to avoid putting paper and cardboard into your recycling bin at the moment during the COVID-19 Pandemic shutdown. We'll let you know when it can be properly recycled again.
Our zero waste eco-warriors, Daniel and Alexandra, making a wonderful sign using home-made paint - cornflour, water and food colouring! Very creative and non-toxic.
Even the sheep was impressed!
We're devoted to zero waste, and have wonderful local, wastebusters like Trish Allen, who will be sharing tips on reducing waste and keeping you up to date with what is happening at our Lawrie and Rustrybrook Road sites.
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