News | 26 January 2024
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No change needed to recycling system in Wellington

The Ministry for the Environment is introducing nationwide recycling standards to make sure each council is collecting the same recyclables from homes across the motu – with no change needed in Pōneke.

Two people wearing high vis jackets standing infront of a recycling truck.

There’ll be no difference to recycling in Wellington City when the standardisation kicks-in on February 1 as Wellington City Council has been keeping tabs on the changes, and has made sure any updates to our kerbside recycling has been in line with what’s coming. 


Deputy Mayor Laurie Foon says a consistent system around the whole country will make recycling easier, but reducing recycling completely is the goal.


“We endorse, encourage, and educate on how to recycle correctly, but ultimately the goal is to dramatically reduce the amount of recycling by using alternatives to packaging like refilling, reusing, and repurposing items where possible because less production of resources is part of our city direction to be a low carbon circular economy.


“Wellingtonians are generally good at recycling, but there is still room for improvement. A quick visit to the Council’s website can clear up any doubt around what can and can’t go in the bins or bags.”


Manager Waste, Water, and Resilience Chris Mathews says while what gets picked up from Wellington homes won’t change, it’s a good time to check you’re recycling right. 


“We want to make sure everything that goes in your recycling bin or bag can be sorted at the Oji recycling facility in Seaview.


“It’s important to do the basics well. Take lids off bottles and containers, rinse all items, and remember not to squash your cans or plastic recycling so the optic sorter can spot it and sort it properly.” 


It also means when Wellingtonians move or go on holiday to another part of the country, or visitors from Aotearoa come here, they know exactly what they can recycle wherever they are.  


 A reminder of what can go in the recycling bin or bag:


  • Plastic bottles, trays and containers numbered 1, 2 and 5 only
  • Cleaned food and drink tins and cans
  • Paper and cardboard
  • Glass bottles and jars - with no lids


Items that can’t be put out for recycling: 


  • Plastic and metal lids – but 2 and 5 plastic and all metal lids can be dropped-off at the Sustainability Trust or at the Tip Shop
  • Plastics numbered 3,4,6, and 7 
  • Compostable packaging and containers
  • Nappies and sanitary products
  • Fabric and clothing
  • Soft plastics
  • Polystyrene
  • E-waste
  • Coffee cups and lids
  • Aerosols
  • Batteries (to recycle batteries drop them at one of our collection points)


For more information on recycling and ways to reduce waste, check out Council’s website