All entries for Monday 17 October 2011

October 17, 2011

End of Bottle Banks in Coventry. Blue Bin Madness.

blue recycling bins for all recycling

I have been sorting our glass recycling by colour into clear, green and brown glass for close to 2 decades. A set of 4 big IKEA recycling bins in the porch covered the glass & aluminium cans. Their size helped reduce the trips to the bottle bank.

When the third wheelie bin was introduced in Coventry that can take away glass, paper, metal and some plastics I continued to take the glass to the bottle banks where the sorting had to save processing and add value. The banks still seemed to popular, were often quite full, and others with their bags and boxes were doing their sorting, quickly, in the supermarket car parks.

This week I found that all the bottle bank skips were replaced by banks of identical trade-style blue-lidded general recycling bins. Depositing all my bottles into one of these created broken glass as before but this time the glass slivers were mixed up with paper, plastics and metals!

Coventry City Council claim that our blue bin recycling is largely sorted automatically by their contractor. Their website also still says how the bottle banks are collected by glass recyclers Berrymans. Now the glass needs 2 trips and I am certain that less glass will get there than did from the colour-sorted bottle banks.

Many other councils, such as Kent, recycle better than Coventry with wider plastics recycling and kerbside sorting. Part of the difference is Coventry’s waste to energy incinerator so the land fill tax is not as big a problem here.

So why would the council take away this simple, direct and efficient recycling route for glass? Easier for the public? Easier for them to organise with only 1 type of recycling to dump into the same place as the domestic blue lid bin lorries go? Certainly the extra cost of glass recycling must be on someone else’s budget!


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