Where to start?
If you are part of the Para Kore programme start by talking to your local Kaiarahi (Enviromental Facilitator). If you aren’t start by talking to others and getting their support. Start with the simple things- if you’re throwing all your milk bottles into the rubbish bins, start there. Find a bin and label it plastic bottles. Download our Wash and Squash sign, print it onto A3 card, laminate it if you can and then pin up on your wall above the plastic bottle bin. Once plastic bottle recycling is going well, you can start on recycling systems and bins for cans, glass, cardboard and food. With composting systems in place or animals to feed you can also separate out food waste. Dirty paper can be separated too for composting.
Finding your nearest recycling centre
- Search online
- Ring your local council or visit their website
- Who’s going to pick up or drop off your recycling?
- Most towns, cities and rural transfer stations in Aotearoa now have recycling options. This is usually free!
Finding someone to drop off the recycling or arranging a commercial company to pick up your recycling however is the most important step. People might be keen to do the recycling, but not so keen to drop it off. Don’t start recycling until you have got this step sorted.
If there is rubbish pick-up in your area but not recycling, try saving up your recycling and dropping it off at a transfer station when you are going that way or find someone else who can take it like a whānau member who lives in town where recycling is picked up for free.
Questions to ask a commercial collector
- Do you provide the bins?
- Are there rental charges for these bins?
- What are the frequency of the pick-ups?
- Will I be charged per pick-up or will I be charged regardless on a weekly (or fortnightly etc) basis
- Can I ring up when I need a pick-up?
- Do I have to sign a contract for a specific timeframe?
- What will the total costs be?
- What can be put in each bin?
Wheelie bins, crates and clear liners
If you are part of the Para Kore programme, you will be provided with all the bins you need. All places have different needs, but generally stickered crates are required inside, and stickered wheelie bins outside. Clear liners may also be provided for inside the wheelie bins. This means that the liner bag full of recyclables can be removed and the recyclable materials taken to the recycling centre without having to lug the big wheelie bin around. Easy for when you might be leaving the marae, and going past a recycling centre. Something for you to drop off on your way home.
Quick tip: try and keep your plastic liners clean so you can just empty them and re-use them which will save you money and save resources.
Para Kore has a range of signage, and is continually developing more. See our resources page, feel free to download and print.
How do I use the bins?
All our bins are colour coded. Our systems work like this:
Blue Plastics Crate → Blue Plastics Wheelie Bin
Red Cans Crate → Red Cans Wheelie Bin
Black Glass Crate → No wheelie bins given for glass, due to weight hazards
Flatten cardboard inside and then take outside → Wool Sack (Fadge)
The plastics blue crate gets tipped into the plastics blue wheelie bin. If you aren’t on the Para Kore programme you will need to find or purchase your own bins. Attractive bins help people respect the recycling systems more. The bins should also be labelled clearly. There are two methods we use with bins. One option is to put all the recyclable containers (glass, plastics and cans) into one bin, and the other is to separate them all out, having a bin for plastics, a bin for glass and a bin for cans. What’s best for you will depend on how much space you have, what volumes of recycling you have and what the requirements are for your local recycling service providers.