Tipping Point

By Jane Cruickshank / May 5, 2020
collection of waste - old brolly, pot, walking boots

A COMMUNITY councillor is asking Stonehaven residents to hold on to their rubbish until our recycling centre at Redcloak can reopen – while the council warns that fly-tippers will be prosecuted.

Mike Duncan told the Bellman he had contacted waste service officers after the news over the weekend that a number of recycling centres in England had re-opened.

He said: ”The Stonehaven and District Community Council are aware of the challenge residents face at the current time to manage garden (and other recycling waste) at home, and have been in contact with the Council waste services for an update.  

”Under guidelines from the Scottish Government, centres will remain closed.  

”It is hoped that further information from the Government on its exit strategy will be announced in the coming days and this situation may change.”

Mr Duncan added: ”In the meantime we urge residents to manage their waste at home as we do not want to see occurrences of fly tipping in the town or countryside.”

Meanwhile, Aberdeenshire Council is reminding residents that fly-tipping of waste materials is illegal and that offenders will be prosecuted.

Aberdeenshire Council’s waste services manager, Ros Baxter, said: “I would strongly remind the public that fly-tipping is illegal and offenders will be prosecuted. Prior to the current emergency, we imposed several fines for fly-tipping and our teams will continue to serve penalties on those who break the law.

“While our household recycling centres remain temporarily closed at this time, we would ask householders not to leave bags of rubbish or any waste materials such as wood, metals or glass at the gates to these sites as this is also constitutes fly-tipping.

“Similarly, do not leave any textile donations for collection as textile banks are currently not being emptied as there is no demand for these products at this time.

“I would like to take those opportunity to thank all residents who are abiding by these rules and to thank all our dedicated staff who continue to provide an excellent household collection service across Aberdeenshire.”

Advice on managing your waste

With many of us now in lockdown at home, households may be producing more waste than usual, but the council has this important advice to heed:

• Residents should not be tempted to burn their waste or resort to fly-tipping

• Be wary of unsolicited approaches from anybody offering to dispose of waste for a fee without checking the service is being provided by a licensed trader, including any offers made on social media

• All household waste must be contained within bins, as handling bags and loose materials poses a direct health risk to bin crews and will not be collected

• Think twice before starting a clear-out, as you may have to hold on to the waste until recycling centres reopen

If you’re struggling to cope with the amount of waste in your bins, here are some tips for maximising space:

• Recycle as much as you can. Materials that are accepted in your household recycling bin include: Paper, card and cardboard; plastics (i.e. bottles, pots, tubs and trays); metals (i.e. tins, cans, aerosols and foil); and cartons (i.e. food and drink tetra-paks)

• Take advantage of your food caddy for all food waste. This includes tea bags and coffee grounds, fruit and vegetable peelings, out-of-date food (i.e. meat and fish), plate scrapings and leftovers, etc

• Compress your rubbish bags before putting them in your refuse bin. But please don’t be tempted to stand in your bins, as they’re tapered and your bags might get stuck and not empty into the lorry

• Break down recyclable goods (i.e. cereal boxes) and squish air out of bottles and plastic containers (i.e. milk cartons and juice bottles). You can also stack plastic pots or slot items inside each other to create extra space

• Avoid buying non-essential items or materials with excessive packaging, where possible

• If you’re making online purchases, any resulting boxes, bubble wrap or plastic wrapping can be safely stored out of your bins until the lockdown is lifted

• Glass bins are still being emptied, so take your glass with you to the supermarket when you go for your shop

• The most environmentally friendly option for managing garden waste is home composting – garden waste can even be composted in a heap, or in a compost bin if you already have one

For a complete list of materials that are accepted in your household recycling bin: http://bit.ly/Recycling-A-Z

For information and advice on home-composting: http://www.recycleforscotland.com/reduce/home-composting 

For ideas on how to build a home compost bin by reusing materials:

For more information on changes to recycling and waste services during the Covid-19 outbreak, please see https://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/waste/waste-covid-19/