Council’s message in a bottle on recycling

Leeds, Leeds Star

Following Recycle Week, Leeds City Council is reminding residents that they’re never far from a bottle bank and there are plenty of suspects around the home wanted for recycling.

Glass bottles and jars can be recycled at 735 bottle banks at 396 locations in communities across the city.

In 2015/16 Leeds residents recycled 9,654 tonnes of glass. However, estimates show that there could be around another 15,000 tonnes of glass being thrown away, costing over £1.5million in disposal costs.

With the average family using about 500 glass bottles and jars a year and as glass can be recycled over and over again, the council is keen to ensure as much glass as possible is dropped off at recycling points and centres.

Residents can check where their local bottle banks are located on the council’s website or by downloading the Leeds bin app.

At home, everything from deodorant cans, shampoo bottles, cleaning sprays and cardboard boxes are amongst the many items that can be recycled in green bins.

Green bins can take paper, cardboard, cans, aluminium aerosols, foil and plastics.

Recycling rates are sitting at around 40% and the council wants to help residents increase this to 50% by 2020.

While the council has an ambition to introduce more kerbside recycling services, the current financial climate means this isn’t possible.

Instead the council is focusing on working with residents to make the most of existing services.

Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, executive member for environment and sustainability, said:

“Your nearest bottle bank is genuinely closer than you think. You probably pass a few as you go about your daily business but might not even realise it, so I do hope people will check online or try the bin app.

“We really want people to get into good habits when it comes to recycling because of the clear financial and environmental benefits. And by good habits we mean, as an example, clinking your way back to the supermarket on your regular shopping trip.

“We’d love to be able to collect glass from people’s homes but we don’t have the resources to do that. We can’t collect glass in with the other green bin contents, as the quality of those products would suffer. Ultimately what you put in your green bin is a product and our processors want a good quality product.

“However, with a few simple steps, we can collect much more glass from recycling points and make the most of our green bins which would go a really long way to improving the city’s recycling rates and help cut emissions.”

Information on the full range of recycling services, bin collections and recycling centres can be found at www.leeds.gov.uk