Melbourne’s City of Port Phillip has launched a Recycling Reset campaign to help residents combat growing bin contamination linked to people staying at home during to the COVID-19 pandemic.
An audit revealed the contamination rate of Port Phillip residential recycling bins rose from 10 per cent in 2019 to 25 per cent in April 2020.
Items such as soft plastics, garden waste and e-waste were found, resulting in additional processing costs and some bin’s entire contents being unable to be recycled.
The Recycling Reset campaign reminds residents which items can be recycled and provides updates on changes to the recycling industry to reduce bin contamination.
According to Port Phillip Mayor Louise Crawford, now is the perfect time for residents to review their recycling practices and get up to date with industry changes.
“With more people at home, we are producing more waste and our good recycling habits have slipped,” she said.
“I encourage residents to follow our new Recycling Reset guide, which lists all the items that can go in the yellow recycling bin.
“It’s important for us to reduce our contamination rate and recommit to getting recycling right.”
To support the campaign, Recycling Reset officers will be inspecting bins across Port Phillip and leaving bin tag feedback on how well residents are recycling.
Bins which receive a ‘Well Done’ tag over three inspections will be entered into a prize draw to win one of five vouchers drawn each month.
Bins with a small amount of contamination will be given a reminder tag but will still be collected.
When heavy contamination or hazardous materials are discovered, the recycling bin will be stickered shut and not collected until this material has been removed.
Results will be evaluated after the six-month campaign ends.