Your recycling habits could actually be doing more harm than good.

We’re all into the devastating effects of climate change, which literally could be costing us the earth, and trying our best to reverse it – and rightly so! We need to get serious about doing our bit to save our struggling planet.

Recycling can work wonders so long as you are doing it correctly. Sadly despite many of our best efforts, some of are still getting it wrong. Different mistakes can contaminate the entire recycling bag and even the bin itself, rendering all of the contents useless. To help us all get it right we’re sharing the biggest recycling mistakes in the hopes that we can all learn how to make a real difference!

Not emptying containers

Contents left inside containers can seep into them and end up contaminating them. So be sure to empty the containers before putting them into recycling bin. You’d be surprised how many people leave the last pieces of food in the box or don’t rinse out the milk carton.

Putting everything recyclable in together

Most of us now have separate recycling bins, which means we should sort through our recycling at home. Yes paper is recyclable, as is glass – but not together!

If you want further information on what can and cannot be recycled and how you should go about it correctly, check out www.mywaste.ie

Putting coffee cups into the recycle bin

You’d think that coffee cups can be recycled since they’re made of paper, but they also contain plastic to prevent leaking. This means that their ultimate destination is usually the landfill. If you haven’t done so already, go out and invest in your own reusable coffee cup. Most places even offer discounts when you bring your own cup so it’s a win-win!

Not removing tape & plastic

Plastic tape, including sellotape, can’t be recycled, so be sure to remove it from cardboard boxes first. The see through windows in paper envelopes need to be removed and thrown away in your general waste bin, before recycling the rest of the envelope.

Recycling Pizza Boxes

It’s not often we praise frozen food ahead of the freshly made alternative, but in terms of recycling, frozen pizzas come out on top. Boxes from frozen pizzas are completely recyclable. The boxes from fresh pizzas are also recyclable – that is until they come in contact with food. The box will be contaminated from the pizza, it’s grease, and moisture. So it’s best placed in the food recycle bin. If the top is clean, you can remove it and put it in the household recycle bin.

Recycling straws

There’s a reason why we’re being warned off straws! Traditional straws can’t be recycled. Go for paper straws or reusable versions. A soggy straw is a small price to pay for it’s benefits to the environment!

Recycling used kitchen paper and gift wrap

Not all paper is recyclable. While clean kitchen paper can be recycled (but why would you?), once it’s used it can’t be as it’s contaminated and could ruin everything in the bin.

Recycling shiny wrapping paper

Plain wrapping paper can be recycled, but shinny or metallized paper can’t be. Using newspapers is quirky and a clever recyclable alternative. The next time you’re giving a present, remember to gift the planet too with plain brown paper or newspaper wrap! And don’t forget to remove the sellotape before recycling.

Recycling Plastic bags

Even though we all know the damage that plastic bags are doing, we should never forget that it takes approximately 500 years for a plastic bag to decompose in a landfill. If you haven’t already done so, invest in a bag for life and make it your best friend.

Source: www.rsvplive.ie

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