Three quarters of local residents said they did recycle everything they possibly can, but 17% admitted that they put glass directly into their general waste bin, compared to a Northern Ireland average of just 6%.
Of those who said they only recycle when convenient for them, 76% stated they would recycle more if they had one bin for all mixed dry recycling, including glass, instead of using kerbside boxes or taking their glass to a recycling centre.
Almost a third (32%) of respondents in Lisburn & Castlereagh also said that the size of their recycling bins was inadequate. Nearly a quarter (23%) said that they were unhappy with how the council has asked them to recycle.
The survey showed that in council areas where household recyclables (plastic, paper, card, tins and cardboard) can be ‘comingled’ with glass in the same bin, 80% were happy with their recycling scheme, compared to 42% of those in council areas that did not offer this service.
Joseph Doherty, Managing Director of Re-Gen Waste, said: “These survey results indicate that prioritising simplicity and convenience is the best approach to ensuring a high level of household recycling.
“Local authorities need to encourage the maximum number of people to recycle the highest possible volume of materials. As a result, weighed against the cost of processing the material, there are potential financial benefits from reducing landfill costs and selling on recyclable material.
“The Councils we with work in Northern Ireland, England, Wales and Scotland tell us that household-friendly schemes such as comingling recyclables, namely plastic, paper, card, tins, cardboard and glass in one bin, are preferable to residents. Householders are happy to recycle, and want to recycle more materials, but have found that a pre-sort scheme using smaller containers or bins are not user friendly.”
When respondents who live in council areas where glass is comingled were asked if they would recycle less if they had to place their glass waste into a separate caddy, 35% said they would recycle less.
“More and more local authorities are seeing the benefits and cost savings achieved by switching to comingling collection services, alongside an ultra-modern Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) like ours that receives, separates and prepares recyclables for productive use elsewhere,” concluded Mr Doherty.
Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council is running a consultation process on the future of recycling arrangements across the Council area until Friday 27th August 2021.
To have your say, visit https://surveys.lisburncastlereagh.gov.uk/s/kerbsiderecyclingsurvey2021