There’s been strong usage of Masterton’s new wheelie bin service in its first fortnight.
Close to 60 per cent of households on this week’s collection cycle put their recycling wheelie bins out this week – reflecting advice to only put wheelie bins out when they are more than half full. Typically, most households will only put out recycling wheelie bins every second or third collection cycle (once every four to six weeks).
In the first week of wheelie bin pick-ups around 45 per cent of people put the recycling wheelie bins out for collection.
Across the two weeks, more than 3,600 have put recycling wheelie bins out for collection, of a total 8,141 wheelie bins.
Masterton District Council Assets and Operations Manager, David Hopman, said the results were good news.
“Rolling out a service that requires people to change their habits is always a challenge. The statistics we’ve received about people using the service, and doing it correctly, have been better than we anticipated,” Mr Hopman said.
“We understand Masterton’s response to the new service has been better than how similar rollouts have gone in other regions.”
There have been only limited instances of glass or other non-recyclable material being incorrectly put in wheelie bins and only 15 were not emptied because of rubbish or broken glass being put in the wheelie bins.
The new recycling service is a response to community requests for more recycling capacity. The wheelie bin service increases capacity by 140 litres a fortnight.
“Despite the positive start, we recognise there have been challenges and we appreciate peoples’ patience as we iron out the kinks,” Mr Hopman said.
The first two weeks have also brought to light some common questions.
Plastic bottle caps cannot be recycled because they are too small to be collected by the automated recycling sorting machines. They should be put into the Council rubbish bags, as should aluminium caps from glass bottles.
But pizza boxes can be recycled as cardboard – as long as no pizza is left in the box!
One challenge remaining is ensuring recycling is put out on the kerbside before 7:30 am.
“The collection routes have changed so, while some streets may previously have had recycling picked up in the afternoon, the collection may have changed to the morning,” Mr Hopman said.
Next week is the “Week 2” collection cycle – people with the number two on the side of their wheelie bins should put them on the kerbside on their recycling day, along with their rubbish bags. People with “Week 1” should put out their glass recycling bins.
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