A new recycling station near Okaihau is further evidence of the Far North District Council’s commitment to reducing waste going to landfill down to the target of 200kg per person each year.
The Council and Transpacific Industries have established a community recycling station on a former rubbish dump on Waiare Road between State Highway 1 and Wehirua Road.
The recycling station replaces a Molok recycling bin at Okaihau on State Highway 1 and brings the number of community recycling stations in the district to six.
Other recycling stations are at Peria, Totara North, Whangaroa, Rawene and Broadwood.
People in areas where there aren’t kerbside recycling services can also deposit recyclables at the Council’s 14 refuse transfer stations for free.
Council refuse engineer Bruce Hows says the Council and Okaihau Community Association decided to remove the Molok because people had been illegally dumping rubbish at it for years.
The Council hopes that providing recycling services at a fenced and less conspicuous site off State Highway 1 four days a week (Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays) will result in less illegal rubbish dumping by people from outside the area.
Tupuna Trust will help to run the station and trust members will educate the community about its correct use.
Mr Hows says the new recycling station will accept the full range of recyclable items as long as they are clean and placed in the correct container.
“Remember that drinking glasses are not recyclable.”
By recycling, people are helping to save energy used in the manufacturing of new items, he says.
“The steel cans recycled could be returning as reinforcing steel rods.”
The new facility is the latest Council initiative aimed at reducing waste going to landfill.
Mr Hows has also persuaded some hardware stores to discount compost and worm bins during November in a bid to reduce the volume of food scraps going into household rubbish bags.
The Council will join forces with Clean Stream Northland and East West Waste during Recycling Week from November 12-17 and hold a prize draw for committed recyclers.
Mr Hows says 20 percent of the waste going to landfill could easily be recycled if everyone in the Far North made an effort.
“Most people are used to hearing the ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’ message, but we also need to refuse packaging we don’t need, rehome things we no longer want and rot (compost) the rest.
“We need to move our thinking beyond the three Rs to the six Rs if we want to be waste-free.”