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Council urge public to 'drive down waste' this Christmas by recycling

By Niall Harkiss

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Households and businesses in Inverness are being encouraged to consume responsibly and reduce the waste they create this Christmas.

Every year a large increase in waste generated over the festive period, and Highland Council are now appealing for the community to play their part by using their blue bin more effectively.

Cllr Graham Mackenzie, chair of communities and place committee said: “Using your blue bin correctly and to the maximum, really plays a large part in helping us drive down waste disposal costs and improve our carbon footprint.”

He continued, “However, we need the correct materials in the bin so please remember you can use it for Christmas cards, paper wrapping paper, paper packaging, cardboard, food tins, drinks cans, envelopes, food and drink cartons, aerosols and clean plastic bottles, pots, tubs and trays. This includes those empty tubs of lovely sweeties and chocolates!”

New for this Christmas is the ability to recycle clean aluminium foil and trays in the blue bins. All those mince pie foil cases can now go in your blue recycling bin; however, this foil must be clean, dry and free from any food residue.

Residents can find out what can go in their blue bin on the Council’s website. If it isn’t on the list, then it doesn’t go in the blue bin: highland.gov.uk/info/1063/rubbish_-_household_waste/137

Food waste has always been a significant problem at Christmas as much more finds its way into refuse bins.

Over 50,000 tonnes of food and drink is expected to be binned in Scotland during the month of December alone, with over 3,500,000 mince pies and 100,000 turkeys being wasted.

The council are advising people to be more conscious of what they are buying and to try to waste less. Sticking to a shopping list, buying what you need, using left-overs are all actions the council say will help people save money and reduce food waste.

For unavoidable food waste such as turkey bones, fruit and vegetable peelings, tea bags and coffee grinds, Inverness residents are reminded to make maximum use of their food waste collection service.

One area of waste that is becoming more prominent is the issue of electronic waste.

Cllr Mackenzie added: “Keeping electronic and electrical items out of landfill has never been more important as it is full of valuable resources that can be reused. If you are having a clear out before Christmas, please have a think about what you can do with your old tech. Can it be repaired? Can you sell it? Or give it away on local reuse networks like Freecycle. Please do not put it in your refuse bin.”

If items can’t be re-used in any way, people are encouraged to take them to the nearest Household Waste Recycling Centre.

Members of the public are being encouraged to recycle this Christmas
Members of the public are being encouraged to recycle this Christmas

If celebrating at Hogmanay, members of the public are being advised to take empty glass bottles to local bottle banks or Household Waste Recycling Centres. Glass doesn’t need separated into separate colours which makes it even more easy to recycle glass bottles and jars.

Real Christmas trees can be taken to Household Waste Recycling Centres where they will be recycled into compost.

Household Waste Recycling Centres are also open throughout the Festive period – except Christmas Day, Boxing Day and 1st and 2nd January.

Please check highland.gov.uk/recycle for full details of Household Waste Recycling Centre opening hours and for the full range of materials accepted.

Trailers and vans (under 3.5T) need to book to visit the larger sites via highland.gov.uk/recyclingcentres

Householders are reminded to separate waste before arriving at the site.

Christmas bin collections are as normal this year apart from a change to collections on Monday January 2, 2023. Please note the following changes.

Skye collections on Monday January 2, 2023 will be collected on Saturday December 31, 2022

Sutherland collections on Monday January 2, 2023 will be collected on Saturday December 31, 2022

All other areas please put bin out on the January 3, 2023 and it will be collected between the January 3 and January 6, 2023

To check bin collections please visit highland.gov.uk/info/1054/rubbish_and_recycling

For further information about recycling in the Highlands visit: highland.gov.uk/recycle or email recycle@highland.gov.uk or phone 01349 886603.

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