Coronavirus

Tips to manage your plastic and metal recycling during coronavirus

24 APR 20 | 4 minute read

Coronavirus is affecting waste and recycling services across Scotland, meaning some collections are temporarily disrupted.  

You can find out about any changes in your area right here.

If you have been affected by service disruptions, we need you to play your part in helping to continue supporting recycling efforts in Scotland.

Recycling services will resume and Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) will reopen when the time is right.  Until then we need you to try and store any plastic or metal recycling materials you have in the space you have available in your home. We know it might be an inconvenience, but these disruptions won’t be in place any longer than they need to be and it will make a huge difference to the efforts of our frontline workers.

 

Wash and Squash - Recycling Plastic Tubs and Metal Tins

Tips for Plastics:
 

  • Plastic bottles, pots, trays and tubs should be washed thoroughly to make sure no food or drink residue is left.
  • Plastic items can then be squashed and flattened as much as possible. You may find it easier squashing items by placing them on the floor and using your foot to flatten them (with shoes on).
  • Continue to place plastic waste in your plastics recycling bin/container until it is full.  Don’t over compact the bin though so it can be easily emptied when services resume.
  • Plastics can be stored in larger cardboard boxes, plastic boxes or bin bags.
  • Plastic items can still be recycled if they get wet so you may be able to store them in a suitable container outside.

 
Unfortunately, due to coronavirus, plastic film recycling collections at supermarkets for items like bread bags and carrier bags are likely to be suspended – so please store them at home until these services resume.
 
Plastic doesn’t have to be recycled it can also be reused to hold pens and pencils, turned into bird feeders, yogurt pot bird cakes or even new seed planters. You’ll find plenty of creative suggestions on Pinterest.

Tips for Metals:
 

  • All metal and foil items should be washed thoroughly to make sure no food or drink residue is left on the container.
  • Some metals can then be squashed and flattened to maximise space. Cans can be flattened to maximise space - you may find it easier squashing items by placing them on the floor and using your foot to flatten them (with shoes on).
  • Continue to place metals in your metals recycling bin/container until it is full.
  • Metals can be stored in larger cardboard boxes, plastic boxes or bin bags.

 
Metals recycling items include drinks cans, food tins, empty aerosols, clean foil food trays and tin foil. Of course, you don’t need to put them aside for recycling – you can reuse some of those cans and trays in really creative ways. You’ll find lots of ideas to get your creative juices flowing on Pinterest.

What next?

If you have any questions, hopefully we’ll have the answers on our FAQs page. We’ve got more useful tips and guidance below to help you manage your waste. And thank you for doing your bit in a really difficult time.

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