Recycling Rules Have Changed

Monday 15th of October 2018

Recycling Rules have changed? Why? 

For all councils in the Perth Metropolitan Area, there have been changes regarding what can and can’t be recycled in your yellow lid bin. These changes are part of an effort to reduce contamination and make recycling easier for everyone. We have a range of resources including poster and brochure as well as workshops to help you with the changes. For more information email community@wmrc.wa.gov.au

What does this mean for you?

All recycling facilities in WA can NOT accept the following items in the yellow-lid recycling bin:

Soft ‘scrunchable’ plastics

Plastic bags, cling wrap, bubble wrap, lolly wrappers, chip packets, cereal bags and other soft, scrunchable plastics get mixed up with bales of paper and cardboard at the recycling facilities, making them hard to sell. Please take all soft plastics to REDcycle bins in major supermarkets. These will be recycled into park equipment, bollards and other items. You can help by purchasing less soft plastic, choosing items with minimal packaging, using reusable bags and contacting producers to request that they minimise unnecessary packaging. Visit www.redcycle.net.au for more details.

Aerosol cans

Aerosol cans are hazardous as they generally contain residual flammable liquids, which can cause fires and explosions at the recycling facility. Please take aerosols to the West Metro Recycling Centre (formerly Brockway Transfer Station) located on the corner of Brockway Road and Lemnos Street, Shenton Park. They will be sent off for recycling through the WMRC’s Household Hazardous Waste program. 

Meat trays

Due to contamination of meat trays and the mixture of materials used to make them, they should be placed in your general waste bin. Consider buying your meat from a butcher where purchases are wrapped in paper or try taking your own reusable container. 

Polystyrene

Polystyrene is light and bulky, making it uneconomical to transport overseas for recycling. Please place in your landfill bin.

Coffee Cups

Take-away coffee cups and lids are unable to be recycled. Try and avoid single-use and bring your own.  

What CAN you recycle and where does it go?

The following items should be placed in your recycling bin clean, loose and if applicable lids removed:

  • Aluminium cans
  • Paper and cardboard (not shredded paper) 
  • Clean plastic bottles, tubs and containers
  • Steel cans
  • Glass bottles and jars

All items should be clean, dry and empty with lids removed. Place all items loose in your recycling bin.

What is the WMRC doing to help?

The WMRC has an extensive waste education program in place, including bin tagging, school talks, tours, workshops and events to assist residents. The WMRC also provides free recycling services at our drop-off facility in Shenton Park. The West Metro Recycling Centre provides residents and businesses with a central point to drop-off recyclables and other materials which do not belong in your kerbside recycling or landfill bin.

Frequently asked Questions (FAQ's)

What are soft plastics?

Soft plastics are plastics that can be easily scrunched into a ball including plastic bags, cling wrap, bubble wrap, lolly wrappers, chip packets and cereal bags to name a few. If it is plastic but cannot be scrunched into a ball, it is hard plastic.

Do all types of meat trays go into the general waste bin?

Yes. Even if the trays are washed, they still go into the general waste bin.

What do I do with my aerosols now that they can’t go into the kerbside recycling bin?

The West Metro Recycling Centre (formerly Brockway Transfer Station) will accept aerosols free of charge as part of the Household Hazardous Waste Program. The Centre also provides free drop-off of other recyclable items that do not belong in either the recycling or landfill kerbside bin. Visit wmrc.wa.gov.au for more information.

Do these changes only affect Western Metropolitan councils or are they state-wide?

State-wide. All three recycling facilities in WA agreed on the changes, following the formation of a Waste Taskforce by the State Government.

Where do I find my local REDcycle bin?

If your local grocery store does not have a REDcycle bin, visit the www.redcycle.net.au and enter in your postcode. The page will show the nearest grocery store to you that has a REDcycle bin. 

China banned a number of items in January 2018, why have we just found out about the changes?

The National Sword Program was implemented by China in January 2018 but it took some time for the impact on the global market to be felt, including other countries implementing their own recyclable material import bans. Once this became apparent, the State Government launched their Waste Taskforce on 29 March 2018. As part of this Taskforce, the change to what can be recycled was agreed by the three WA recycling facilities. This was communicated to local governments in an information session on 24 August 2018.

Manage Waste Wisely

The Western Metropolitan Regional Council (WMRC) is a local government organisation with five Member Councils (City of Subiaco, Town of Cottesloe, Town of Claremont, Town of Mosman Park and Shire of Peppermint Grove). Established in 1998, the WMRC provides recycling, waste transfer and haulage services and operates the West Metro Recycling Centre (formerly Brockway Transfer Station).  For more information, contact the Western Metropolitan Regional Council’s Communications and Education Team on 9384 4003 or email community@wmrc.wa.gov.au.