Leeds residents will be sorted when it comes to recycling after the local council has responded to citywide feedback suggesting people want to know more about how they can recycle more.
A new handy guide produced by the council will be going out to all households in the city over the coming weeks explaining exactly what kind of plastics you can recycle in your green bin and a simple way to remember, as well as handy advice being posted across the Recycle for Leeds Facebook and Twitter pages.
Any plastic with the number 1, 2 or 4 in the triangle symbol on the packaging means it can go in a green bin in Leeds. Whereas if the numbers 3, 5, 6 or 7 are in the triangle this means the item cannot currently be recycled in the city. Items such as drinks bottles, milk bottles, skincare bottles, clear meat and vegetable trays and shampoo bottles can all go in the green bin, along with a number of other items – see the infographic above for all the items that are recyclable.
By recycling these simple household items, new products can be created, along with helping the environment. For example, plastic bottles that were used for drinks can be remade again as a drinks bottle or, alternatively, remade into something completely different such as a children’s toy or football shirt. Other bottles such as shower gels or fabric conditioners will not be recycled into drinks bottles but could be reborn as a picnic bench or a chair.
Councillor Mohammed Rafique, Leeds City Council executive member with responsibility for the environment said:
“Feedback from residents across the city has been that we need to make recycling as easy as possible to help people realise how easy it can be once you get the hang of it.
“On average plastic makes up just over 11% of the average Leeds household’s black bin content – and therefore an additional 17,000 tonnes of plastic that could be recycled across the city each year.
“Recycling offers so many benefits to the environment and to the city, and when you learn simple facts such as it only take 25 drinks bottles to make a fleece jumper – then paying more attention to what we put in our green bins is really worthwhile. I hope our latest guide and advice will help people get on board with doing their bit.”
Leeds recycles plastics 1, 2 and 4 in Leeds’s household recycling bins. Typical items include soft drink/ shampoo/ detergent bottles, milk containers and plastic bags.
Currently, the council do not recycle other types of plastic that include pots, tubs and trays that tend to be type 5 (polypropylene). The plastics collected in the city are dictated by the market demand among material re-processors. The market demand for plastics is strongest for types 1, 2 and 4 in Yorkshire, but very limited for other types. As such type 3, 5, 6 and 7 plastics are not routinely recycled by local authorities.
The council review the city’s waste strategy consistently and look to model different methods, of which plastic recycling is one element. A draft waste strategy will be available for public consultation later this year.
For more information about what you can recycle in your green bin visit https://www.leeds.gov.uk green bin or download the Leeds Bins App on the Apple App store or via the Google Play store for Android phones.