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The paper I send for recycling…

(25 Posts)
MayBee70 Fri 04-Nov-22 21:26:03

Is just burned. DH phoned the council yesterday because he’d mistakenly put something in the recycling bin by mistake. Knew there was no chance of retrieving it but he just asked them if, when paper was being sorted, they might pick up on things that looked as if they shouldn’t be there. He was told no chance as it all just gets burned. I was told his years ago but didn’t want to believe it. I spend ages going through my waste paper so that there’s no plastic etc mixed up with it. What’s the point of trying to do things that protect the environment when the paper we think is going to be recycled just gets incinerated?

Calendargirl Sat 05-Nov-22 07:26:10

Our cardboard and ‘clean’ paper goes in a separate bin to glass, tins etc, and is sent to a specialist paper recycling place that deals with better quality paper.

I am sure it doesn’t get burned.

At least I hope not.

Poorer quality stuff is incinerated to produce energy I think.

FarNorth Sat 05-Nov-22 09:02:25

Perhaps he or you could email the relevant department, MayBee, to ask about this.
It could have just been a foolish staff member on the phone or, if not, at least he/you would be making a point about it.

Baggs Sat 05-Nov-22 09:20:50

Poorer quality stuff is incinerated to produce energy I think.

I was hoping this might be the case, Cal.

Redhead56 Sat 05-Nov-22 09:55:20

I shred white paper usually letters not magazines etc and put it in the compost bin. It’s good as a mulch on the raised vegetable beds.

MayBee70 Sat 05-Nov-22 11:31:11


Perhaps he or you could email the relevant department, MayBee, to ask about this.
It could have just been a foolish staff member on the phone or, if not, at least he/you would be making a point about it.

Well, they went away and asked someone and then came back and said it was all burned. My daughter, who lives in the next village told me years ago that she’d been told the same thing. I’m quite obsessive about recycling so I do need to find out more.

M0nica Sat 05-Nov-22 14:59:10

Our county council has a huge incinerator that burns most landwaste rubbish and generates enough electricity to supply 60,000 homes.

MayBee70 Sat 05-Nov-22 15:08:39


Our county council has a huge incinerator that burns most landwaste rubbish and generates enough electricity to supply 60,000 homes.

I’m hoping that’s the case with ours. I spend ages going through my paper to make sure there are no bits of plastic from window envelopes in with it.

M0nica Sat 05-Nov-22 15:34:49

If the paper is going to be burnt in an incinerator and not recycled, you might as well leave the plastic from window envelopes in. It will not affect the incinerator.

MayBee70 Sun 06-Nov-22 00:07:41

I just checked and it says envelopes can’t be recycled because of the glue on them and window envelopes can’t be recycled because of the plastic. That’s why I go through everything quite carefully.

Grammaretto Sun 06-Nov-22 05:01:53

"Where your recycling goes | Midlothian Council"

This is what we are told but they are a bit coy about some of the destinations
You have to believe them don't you

biglouis Sun 06-Nov-22 05:45:50

We have separate bins for some things but not others:-

Green - garden waste and food

Brown - glass, bottles and tin cans

Blue - cardboard and paper

Grey - anything else (including plastic)

So all the bulky things like yogurt pots, cellophane, plastic bags, food packaging etc have to go in with the general household rubbish into a small bin! I dont know how families manage.

Grammaretto Sun 06-Nov-22 06:26:32

We are expected to clean any food off the plastic. Also thin plastic such as plastic bags are non recyclable.
I wonder if anyone obeys the rules.
Infact a local band wrote a song based on the recycling instruction booklet.
I now buy most of my staple products from a refillery - avoiding plastic altogether. Many young families choose to do this too.
What I cannot stand are the rows of wheelie bins . Why is there so much waste!

Grammaretto Sun 06-Nov-22 06:34:51

Calendargirl Sun 06-Nov-22 07:40:44

I wonder if anyone obeys the rules

I don’t know how families manage

Well, I certainly try to. It’s not difficult putting things in different containers. Why is it any more difficult for families?

Retired now, so yes, I have ‘time’ to do stuff like this, but to be honest, if I still had my children at home, it would still get done and they would have been taught how to do it also.

What would have been difficult, living in a row of terraced houses back then with hardly any garden, would have been storing all the different bins. Just no room, they would have taken up the entire bit of front garden. I sympathise with others in similar properties.

Where we live, you don’t have to separate window bits from envelopes, ‘soft’ plastics such as bread bags can be recycled at local supermarkets.

It all helps to reduce waste hopefully.

Calendargirl Sun 06-Nov-22 07:46:09

Just re-read biglouis’ post about families.

I now realise that certain items in her area have to go in the general waste bin, making it too full.

In our area, bulky items such as yogurt pots are put in the grey recycling bin along with tins, glass, certain plastics etc.

Not much has to go in the ‘black’ bin, hence it is smaller.

Apologies if I sounded glib.

biglouis Sun 06-Nov-22 08:02:13

Some time ago the council brought in the smaller "general waste" bins without any public consultation or discussion. Now they are no doubt wondering about the rise in fly tipping. People have their own ways of exacting revenge when they get pizzed on from a great height by the local gestapo.

Daisymae Sun 06-Nov-22 09:59:41
Apparently the UK dumps a lot of waste abroad to poorer countries with a poor record of recycling. Out of sight out of mind.

Cabbie21 Sun 06-Nov-22 16:24:13

I wish councils adopted the same policies across the country, with consistent colours for bins. Our general waste is grey, recycling is blue, garden waste is green, but I know it is not the same everywhere.
Aldi have just started taking soft plastic, which is great, if I remember to take it with me.

Grammaretto Sun 06-Nov-22 18:13:44

So biglouis do you have 4 bins?

If so that seems ridiculous. It must encourage people to use more than they need.
2 bins is plenty. A small compost bin for weekly collection and the alternating collection of general waste and recycling.
There's a block of flats next to me whose bins seem to be breeding.
A bin store was built with space for each flat to keep their bin.
Now that each household has 2 bins plus compost and a bottle box, the area next to the flats is dominated by wheelie bins.

Calendargirl Sun 06-Nov-22 19:42:21

We have 4 bins.

Green for garden waste, for which we pay £40 or £50 annual fee, can’t remember which.

Grey for recycling, tins, glass, plastic bottles etc.

Black for general waste,

Purple for clean paper and cardboard.

And we don’t have a kitchen waste one yet!

MayBee70 Sun 06-Nov-22 19:44:24

At least I know the brown bin works as the council sell compost made from it.

Esspee Sun 06-Nov-22 19:57:36

We have four bins on a complex collection cycle in Glasgow but the point of the OP from MayBe is that we may be separating things unnecessarily if councils just burn the lot.
We need to request details from our councils so that we aren't wasting our time.

paddyann54 Sun 06-Nov-22 20:11:57

We have 3 bins ,no glass one but a big communal glass collection point in the next street along with a clothes collection point .
Our blue bin takes all recyclable plastics yoghourt pots,food contanes as well as paper and cardboard .When we first had the blue bin mine was left unemptied,I got a visit from a man with a clipboard to explain I shouldn't have put yoghourt pots in it and if I removed them my bin would be emptied the next day .I did and it was
.It was changed quite soon after

Families of more than 4 can have an extra green bin for general waste and several have those in my street ,One person homes can request a smaller bin ,I dont know anyone who has done that .We get a leaflet yearly with updated info about what can and cant be recycled

MissAdventure Sun 06-Nov-22 20:27:05

We have six flats, and two big wheely bins.

That's it.
That is how bothered our council is.