Put your garden waste to work
If you’re itching to get back in the garden after a long winter, now could be a good time to think about how you’re going to get rid of your unwanted weeds, twigs and grass cuttings.
More than 5,000 tonnes of garden waste are thrown into rubbish bins in Surrey every year, which is bad for the environment and expensive for the taxpayer. There are three easy ways to recycle your garden waste.
- The most environmentally friendly way is home composting, as the waste rots down and produces nutritious compost. Visit Recycle for Surrey's website or call 0844 571 4444 to buy a compost bin from just £13 and there’s also lots of help and advice to get you started.
- You can subscribe to Biffa’s Green Waste Club and have it collected fortnightly from your home. If you don’t create enough garden waste on your own, why not ask a neighbour if you can share their bin or subscription. If you would like to find out more visit the Green Waste Club's website or call 0800 0858 286.
- Garden waste can be taken to all of Surrey’s community recycling centres free of charge.
'Tis the season to recycle
One of the best things about Christmas is relaxing with friends and family, so why not let the Recycle for Surrey app and search tool make life easy by helping with your festive recycling.
You can, of course, recycle the usual things as long as they’re clean and dry, like greetings cards, plastic drinks bottles, glass jars and food tins, but check the app and search tool to find out what else you can recycle at Christmas and throughout the year. Remember that you can’t recycle anything with glitter, or wrapping paper that doesn’t rip.
Visit the App Store or Google Play to download the Recycle for Surrey app, or go to recycleforsurrey.org.uk to use the search tool. Also remember that many rubbish and recycling collections change over the festive period, so check the dates with your local district or borough council.
Are you recycling right?
Do you know what’s new in recycling? It’s always worth checking what and how you can recycle to reduce what you throw away, as recycling services can change and packaging can be confusing.
You might be surprised to realise you can recycle things like envelopes with windows, bleach bottles and biscuit tins in Surrey. But what you can recycle differs depending on where you live in the county, and there are some things you can’t recycle anywhere in Surrey; like polystyrene and nappies.
Also, if you’ve put the wrong items in your recycling bin, it might not be emptied. That’s because the reprocessor could reject the whole truck load and everyone’s recycling would then be thrown away.
To find out if you’re recycling right, including what to do with food, clothes, home textiles, garden waste and small electrical items, use the search tool.
Line your food waste bin with plastic bags
You can now line your food waste caddy with plastic bags or liners, which makes it easier, cleaner and cheaper to recycle your food. You can use anything from old shopping bags to bread or salad bags and you can still use newspaper or compostable liners. Please don’t include black bin bags or plastic food packaging.
What can go in your caddy?
All cooked and uncooked food waste can go in, including:
- Tea bags and coffee grounds
- Fruit and vegetable peelings
- Egg shells
- Fish bones and skin
- Mouldy bread, cakes and pastries
- Food that’s passed its use by date
If you’ve got smelly food you don’t want hanging around inside, simply tie it up in a plastic bag and put it straight in your outside food waste bin.
The food waste is collected from your outside food waste bin every week on the same day as your rubbish or recycling.
To find out more about your weekly food waste collection visit www.recycleforsurrey.org.uk or food recycling.
Clothes, shoes and textiles
Two thirds of Surrey residents don’t realise underwear, socks and tights can be recycled.
Research has shown residents know they can recycle clothes and home textiles like sheets and towels (no duvets or pillows please). However, they are more likely to throw personal items and accessories like bags and belts in the bin, which is bad for the environment and expensive for the taxpayer.
In fact, last year in Surrey more than 10,500 tonnes of clothes and home textiles were thrown away which could have been reused or recycled instead.
All clothes and home textiles (except duvets and pillows) can be recycled, even if they’re torn or tatty, but should be clean and dry. They’re either sorted to be used again in the UK or abroad, or recycled into new products like felt, insulation or stuffing.
To start recycling your textiles, clothes and paired shoes, place them in a plastic carrier bag, tie the top and leave them next to your green food caddy for collection. You can also put them in any textile bin at recycling bank sites or the community recycling centres.
Visit Recycle for Surrey for more information on its textiles campaign.
Did you know you can recycle from every room in the house?
Everyone in Surrey can recycle tins, cans, paper, card, plastic bottles, pots, tubs, trays, glass bottles and jars. So that means the items you can recycle include:
- Food tins, plastic trays and jam jars from the kitchen.
- Drinks cans and bottles, newspapers and tissue boxes from the living room.
- Bleach and shampoo bottles and toilet roll tubes from the bathroom.
- Moisturiser tubs, shoe boxes and magazines from the bedroom.
Please remember to rinse your glass, plastics, tins and cans, before putting them loose in your blue lidded recycling bin or clear recycling sacks. If any leftover food or liquid leaks onto other recycling it risks the whole load being thrown away rather than recycled.
Once collected and sorted, your recycling will either be turned back into the same product or into something new – like football shirts or children’s toys.
You can recycle all these at home using your blue lidded mixed recycling bin.
View Recycle for Surrey's video.
Plastics from every room in the house can be recycled.
Did you know if you recycle your plastic pots, tubs, trays and bottles, they could be turned into new items like furniture, children’s toys, a football shirt or even another bottle?
We can all recycle plastics from every room in the house. That includes yoghurt pots, margarine tubs, fruit or veg trays and every type of plastic bottle. Whether the bottle contained drinks, shampoo, bleach, cooking oil or ketchup, it can be recycled and turned into a great new product.
Only 27% of plastics are currently recycled in Surrey. The rest are thrown away, which is bad for the planet and expensive for the taxpayer. In fact, it would save taxpayers more than £200,000 a year in waste disposal charges if every adult in Surrey recycled just one extra plastic bottle a week.
You can recycle your plastics using our fortnightly collection service.
Visit Recycle for Surrey for more information on its plastics recycling campaign.