New Year – Plastic Free July Update

2021 NY resolution for living plastic-free

Choosing to refuse one more plastic items each month in 2021 – As we move forward in 2021 this option might be easier than doing everything at once. Ask you family, friends, sports club or office to commit each month to swap out one single-use plastic product with a reusable alternative. For example, in January you could swap out takeaway coffee cups for a reusable one, in February you could start buying plastic-free toothbrushes, in March start using a personal reusable water bottles and so on. 

Can you Refuse’ Single-use Plastic?

Each year in July 2020 people all over the world aim to exclude plastic bottles, cutlery, fruit packing, coffee cup lids and other common plastic waste items from their daily life, opting instead for reusable containers or those made from biodegradable materials.  We think this is a great idea and should be be a year round effort by all. 

Plastic Free Poster 1

The vision started in Western Australia in 2011 and has since moved across the world to help promote and stop the earth becoming further saturated with plastic materials which are part of our convenience lifestyle.

Lots of items are designed to be used once and disposed of. They fill up bins in homes, work, schools and on streets across the world including Ireland with Irish town and city bins full to capacity most of the time.

Ireland and some other countries have made some progress with a tax on single-use plastic bags which reduced usage but problems still exist with millions of plastics bags, cutlery, bottles plates and cartons used daily.

This usage is rapidly increasing the amount of non-biodegradable product on the earth. These plastics may be cheap and convenient, but it’s having real consequences. Plastic is polluting our land, air, and oceans; it is harming our marine life and even invading our bodies with Microbeads everywhere.

Plastic Free Poster 2

Where to start – We have added 10 Tips to help

BRING YOUR OWN BAG: Get yourself a couple of good cloth bags and leave them in the car or beside the front door so you’ll always have them on hand.

DON’T BUY BOTTLED WATER: Get some reusable bottles and fit a cost-effective water filter to the taps in your home.

FRUIT CARTONS:  Avoid plastic fruit and vegetable packaging. A single plastic produce carton can take more than 1000 years to degrade so shop for unpackaged fruit and veg when you can or leave the plastic with the store.  They will get the idea!

DAILY COFFEE: Take away coffee cups are lined with plastic and often can’t be recycled. Take your own coffee cup or have a sit-down coffee using the cafe’s cups.

PACK A LUNCHBOX:  Use a good sturdy lunchbox with separate compartments, to allow you to pack food straight into separately, eliminating the need for plastic wrapping and avoid plastic-wrapped snack foods like biscuits or bars. Try making some at home, it cheaper and somewhat healthier.

PLASTIC FOOD WRAP: Buy some stainless steel or long plastic containers to help eliminate the need for single life plastic food wrapping.

STRAWS: If you really want a straw, buy reusable straws for use at home and demand reusable straws from your local takeaways or restaurants.

CUT PLASTIC CUTLERY: Plastic cutlery is another single-use plastic item you can avoid. Keep some reusable cutlery in your lunch or picnic bag.

SOURCE A SODA MAKER: This helps reduce the amount of plastic soft drinks bottles purchased, used and disposed of in your home and office weekly.

SHOP WISE: Ask your local shop and supermarket to make the change away from plastic or vote with your feet until they do. It will happen and think about all the waste which won’t enter your waste and the related time saved.

Plastic Free Poster 3

Plastic Free 2021 – what to do! 

Just join the challenge and ‘Choose To Refuse’ single-use plastic during 2021. You can assist in achieving the goals of having a world without plastic waste.  Will you join and give up? If so learn more, and sign up at www.plasticfreejuly.org

Did You Know?

Friends of the Earth are interested to have Plastic Deposit Return Scheme in Ireland. They say it is a tried and tested method of collecting plastic bottles in public places, in states across America and countries across Europe. People can return their used drinks containers in exchange for money at reverse vending machines. Just like we returned glass for coins in Ireland in the past we can do this for plastic and aluminium today.

In late 2019 our previous Climate Action and Environment Minister Richard Bruton said he would like to see a study before taking any action in Ireland.

At the same time, final regulations for Scotland’s Deposit Return Scheme have now been laid in the Scottish Parliament. It is now confirmed the scheme’s go-live date will be 1 July 2022, giving retailers and producers “time to prepare for a successful scheme

What’s Planned 

If you purchase drinks in Scotland will have to pay a (£) deposit on every bottle or drinks can purchase. This ambitious new scheme unveiled by the Scottish government aims to help reduce and recover items for reuse and safe recycling.

The deposit return scheme is due to be the first national scheme in the UK and will cover glass and plastic bottles, as well as aluminium and steel drinks cans, sold in Scotland.

The consumer will get their deposit back when they return the empty bottle or can to the retailer. The scheme will operate throughout Scotland, including rural areas.  All types of drinks and all containers above 50ml and up to three litres in size are included. What do you think about this initiative? Would Ireland benefit from similar?

Some Progress!

In October 2020 the new Irish Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan TD invited the public to give their views on the design of a deposit return scheme for plastic bottles and aluminium cans. The consultation feedback is being reviewed and you can get further details here.

Some positive steps are been taken by food retailers in Ireland. For example Aldi are removing plastic wrapping from product like drinks cartons, some fruit, veg and meat cartons and polystyrene from frozen pizza bases. You might ask yourself and then your local store manager what they are doing to really reduce plastic usage?

Organisations like Coca Coke and Guinness have also removed plastic from drinks carton and replaced with cardboard cartons so some change is underway. We are all demand and do more!

About Recycle IT

As you know lots of electrical, electronic and metal items are packed in plastic and have a plastic cover or coating. When these items are recycled the plastic is removed and mainly reused in new products. We do our best to aid this process but like you we we can struggle with everyday soft plastics used in the office or canteen. We do our best to reduce and this is why we follow Plastic Free July its helps with tips and guides change!

Recycle IT is an award-winning not for profit enterprise providing a collection and drop off service for all types of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). Last year Recycle IT offered to drop off and collection services to homes, schools, charities, and businesses across Dublin and surrounding areas collecting a range of WEEE which includes thousands of computers, cables, monitors, microwaves and TV’s.

Recycle IT services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland. Recycle IT are supported by Pobal, South Dublin County Council and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Dublin, Kildare and Wicklow.

Recycle IT Logo
Recycle IT Logo

E-Waste in the EU: Facts and Figures

We are sharing a news article from the European Parliament, a forum for political debate and decision-making at EU level. This particular article was published on 23 December 2020 and is about electrical and electronic waste and the fact that it growing faster than any other waste stream. Check out the facts and figures in the infographics below.

Did you know that less than 40% of e-waste is recycled. Electronic devices and electrical equipment define our modern life. From washing machines and vacuum cleaners to smartphones and computers, it is hard to imagine life without them. But the waste they generate has become an obstacle in the EU efforts to reduce its overall ecological footprint. This includes Ireland.

What is e-waste?

Electronic and electrical waste, or e-waste, covers a variety of different products that are thrown away after use. From the largest items to the smallest including cables, phones and batteries. Large household appliances, such as washing machines and electric stoves, are the most collected, making up more than half of all collected e-waste.

This is followed by IT and telecommunications equipment (laptops, printers), consumer equipment and photovoltaic panels (video cameras, fluorescent lamps) and small household appliances (vacuum cleaners, toasters, kettles etc.).

All other categories, such as electrical tools and medical devices, together make up just 7.2% of the collected e-waste.

E-waste recycling rate in the EU

Less than 40% of all e-waste in the EU is recycled, the rest is unsorted. Recycling practices vary among EU countries. In 2017, Croatia recycled 81% of all electronic and electrical waste, while in Malta, the figure was 21%. Ireland recycles 47.7% of all electronic and electrical waste but this figure could be a ;ot higher if we all did more.

Why do we need to recycle electronic and electrical waste?

Discarded electronic and electrical equipment contains potentially harmful materials that pollute the environment and increase the risks for people involved in recycling e-waste. To counter this problem, the EU has passed legislation to prevent the use of certain chemicals, like lead.

Many rare minerals that are needed in modern technology come from countries that do not respect human rights. To avoid inadvertently supporting armed conflict and human rights abuses, MEPs have adopted rules requiring European importers of rare earth minerals to carry out background checks on their suppliers.

What is the EU doing do reduce e-waste?

In March 2020, the European Commission presented a new circular economy action plan that has as one of its priorities the reduction of electronic and electrical waste. The proposal specifically outlines immediate goals like creating the “right to repair” and improving reusability in general, the introduction of a common charger and establishing a rewards system to encourage recycling electronics.

To learn more and read the post from the European Parliament please click here.

If you need to recycle electrical or electronic equipment safely Recycle IT are happy to help. Just send us an email or call 01 4578321 for more details.

Recycle IT is a not for profit, social enterprise based in Clondalkin, Co Dublin, Ireland.

Recycle IT Collection

Recycle IT – Working with COVID-19

Overview 2021

Following a recent Cabinet meeting the Government has decided to introduce COVID-19 Level 5 restrictions during late December 2020. These restrictions are due to be in place until January 31st 2021.

The Government say that over the coming weeks, we have a real challenge individually and collectively. With much of society and the economy closed, we all have choices to make which will have a significant impact on how we manage Covid-19 in 2021 To learn more click here.

These new restrictions mean all counties in Ireland moving to Level 5 from midnight on 30 December 2020. At present Level 5 restrictions will remain in place until midnight on 31 January 2021. As is usual the situation was continually reviewed by the Government, based on the status of the virus and public health advice.

COVID 19

The priority is always to keep schools, early learning and childcare services open and minimise disruption to essential services but again this is subject to change. This means that some services will be moved online and some businesses and public services will be closed. You can learn more by clicking here.

Recycling with Recycle IT

Recycle IT plan to remain open for electrical, electronic and pure metal recycling DROP OFF during Level 5 of the Plan for Living with Covid-19. Electrical recycling collection services will be postponed during the duration of Level 5.

Recycle IT plan to offer our personal collection again from Feb 1st 2021. (based on current advice) We will then offer services to households, schools, community group, charities and business organisations.

We will be open for electrical, electronic and pure metal recycling drop off Monday to Friday from Jan 6th 2021. You will find our address and a location map here.

COVID-19 Public Health Advice

Some of our staff team will be able to work from home. Others delivering services directly to the public with be working safely from our facility in Clondalkin, Dublin 22. The team will following all health and safety guidelines with a focus on those specific to COVID 19. Team members will have there temperature recorded daily with hand washing, hand sanitization and social distancing a priority.

Phone calls will be answered during the hours of 9.30 am and 3.30 pm. Email is the best form of communication and will be monitored Monday to Friday from 9 am and 5 pm.

Help Prevent COVID 19

If you wish to book an electrical recycling collection from your home, school, community group or business Recycle IT will make every effort to support on reopening for collections.

Once collection resume, its worth noting all items for recycling will need to be accessible, disconnected and ready for collection. Recycle IT teams will be following social distancing guidelines. They are happy to collect the electronic and electrical equipment from drives, parking areas, outside common areas and other accessible & clear external location. We ask recyclers to remain mindful of social distancing and hand hygiene guidelines when recycling.

If you need further information on COVID 19 updates are available on the HSE-HPSC Website (updated daily at 12 noon) together with guidance and other relevant information.

About Recycle IT

Recycle IT, is an award-winning social enterprise offering electrical, electronic and metal recycling services through drop off and collection. Services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland and South Dublin County Council.

Recycle IT are supported by the Department of Rural and Community Development, Pobal and Dormant Accounts and authorised by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across in Leinster.

For more information on Recycle IT please call 01 4578321, email info@recycleit.ie or visit our website www.recycleit.ie

Truck with Recycle IT Logo

Recycling Christmas Trees in 2021

Christmas Trees can be recycled for FREE in 2021

As the festive season comes to an end after New Years, Recycle IT  are encouraging you to Recycle and Reuse your Christmas Tree and whatever you do don’t throw your tree in a bin or leave it for your waste service to collect!  You can easily recycle for reuse locally with many local authorities providing drop off points across each county.

Christmas Tree Recycling 2017
Christmas Tree Recycling 2021

We acknowledge local areas are offering different services, but after reading this post you should be able to find a Christmas tree recycling centre close to your home in Dublin!

It also worth noting if you have old or damaged Christmas Lights Recycle IT will accept them. All lights, old or damaged, large or small, internal or external can be dropped off free of charge from January 6th 2021. Learn more here

Some Interesting Facts 

Before you click the links below you might as well learn some facts on what can be done with your trees after the holiday. Kids love this stuff!

  • Real Christmas trees are often chipped into mulch at a local recycling centre
  • Mulch is reused in for animal bedding or wooded areas or local parks.
  • Remember it takes time to grow a tree, with a tree  6 to 7 feet taking on average 7 years to grow.
  • Recycled real Christmas trees have been used to make sand and soil erosion barriers and been placed in ponds for fish shelter.
  • Growing Christmas trees provides a habitat for wildlife.
  • Christmas trees can remove dust and pollen from the air.
  • Christmas trees have been used to rebuild housing structures for natural wildlife that has been destroyed through development.
  • Artificial trees will last on average for six years in your home, but for centuries in a landfill.
  • An acre of Christmas trees provides the daily oxygen requirements of 18 people.
  • You should not burn your Christmas tree in the fireplace; it can contribute to creosote buildup.
  • Recycle IT recycle the old electrical decorations with tons of old lights, cables, plugs and batteries arriving each year – keep them coming!

List of Christmas Tree Recycling Centres 

All the County Council areas in Dublin and surrounding countries make arrangements for  Christmas Tree recycling services starting early January 2021 and running right up to the middle / end of January 2021.

This service is free and is usually for domestic household trees only.  Usually, one tree per household/vehicle will be accepted.  Signage will be placed at the various locations indicating that it is an official recycling point. For a list of locations near you please see below

Recycle The Tree 2017
Christmas Tree Recycling 2021

Christmas Tree Recycling Centres in Dublin City and County 

You can click the links below to view a list of Dublin locations where Christmas Trees can be recycled in 2021

  • Dublin City Council area – click here
  • South Dublin City Council area -click here
  • Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council area – click here
  • Fingal County Council area – click here
  • Wicklow County Council area – click here
  • Meath County Council area – click here
  • Kildare County Council area – click here

About Recycle IT

Recycle IT is an award-winning not for profit social enterprise providing a collection and drop off service for all types of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). During 2020 Recycle IT provide drop off services and collection services to thousands of homes, communities, and businesses across Dublin and surrounding areas collecting a range of WEEE which includes thousands of lights, computers, cables, monitors, microwaves and televisions.

Recycle IT services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland. Recycle IT are supported by South Dublin County Council and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Dublin, Kildare and Wicklow.

Visit our website for further details about recycling old electrical items or call 01 4578321 to book a collection in the New Year!

Happy New Year from all the Recycle IT team

Recycle IT – Repak Award Winner 2019/2020- WEEE Champion

Climate Change – What to do?

Learn what you can do!

Recycling allows materials to be reused, re-purposed or recycled again and again.  This helps in conserving wildlife habitats, avoids further pollution and saves energy. Recycling safely alongside other small simple changes in your life can really make a difference to climate change.

Waste sent to landfill sites costs Irish taxpayers millions of euros every year, much of which could be saved by recovery, reuse or recycling. Waste produces emissions of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas contributing to climate change and after a number of years with severe weather events we can all see the effects of the climate change first hand.

Climate Change is Here
Climate Change is Here

Meeting emissions target is going to be very tough for Ireland. In 2012 the EPA estimated Ireland will exceed its allocated limit by 2017.

Ireland’s apparent inability to meet its obligations for emissions reduction is due to our transport and agriculture sectors but immediate help is available by simply taking one less trip, using a bike, going for a walk locally and by reducing reusing and recycling items around your house, school, warehouse, store or office.

The United Nations reported less than 20% of e-waste (electric or electronic waste) is formally recycled, with 80% either ending up in landfill or being informally recycled – much of it by hand in developing countries, exposing workers to hazardous and carcinogenic substances such as mercury, lead and cadmium. E-waste in landfill contaminates soil and groundwater, putting food supply systems and water sources at risk.

These type of activities and the negative effects are not unique to developing countries and can happen in Ireland if your items are disposed off incorrectly. Sometimes free “junk” collectors can be too good to be real!

Routes to ease Climate Change in 21

Below you will find 12 tips to help reduce the impacts of climate change, tips such as:

1: Switch to a renewable energy supplier in 2021.

2: Replace old kitchen appliances with energy efficient electrical appliances and recycle safely.

3: Use cleaner, greener light bulbs.

4: Unplug devices for climate, safety and money reasons.

5: Think about the way you travel and how often.

6: Insulate your home.

7: Plant a tree or two.

8: Grow your own fruit and veg.

9: Separate household waste.

10: Make and use your own compost bin.

11: Holiday in Ireland.

12: Cycle and include the family.

13: Recycle old paint cans at a recycling centre.

14: Don’t fill the kettle to make a cup of coffee or tea.

Recycling WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment).

If your in Ireland and have electrical, electronic, battery or lighting waste, you can Recycle IT free at authorised collection points. Use the interactive map to find your nearest local recycling centre, public collection day, electrical retailer and bulb exchange store. Even waste portable batteries can be recycled at your local newsagent.

In Dublin, the local authorities in South Dublin, Dublin City and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown work with Recycle IT to help offer residents collections for electrical and electronic waste as well as pure metal items. This annual service offered across suburbs in Dublin and helps householders dispose of large and small electrical appliances, IT equipment, small house gadgets and powered toys.

Recycle IT help thousands of householders and apartment dwellers yearly with their electrical recycling by providing an authorized, awarding winning, free or cost effective WEEE recycling collections.

The collections are held on week days with residents associations leading the way. Your local residents groups after making arrangements will notified you of your collection day with a flyer delivered to your property or by a text / whatsapp message up to 3 to 4 days before the collection happens in your estate.

E-Waste System Boards from Computers
Waste – Damaged and Broken Equipment

What’s accepted

Recycle IT accept old, damaged or unused electrical, electronic or pure metal items and all can be collected at the same time using our pre booked residents collection events or via personal recycling collections. Bikes, cookers, ovens, computers, phones, cables, exercise equipment, tools etc. Click here for full PDF lists

Just ask you local residents group to contact us and we can arrange a free collection from the homes in your estate or area. These collections are operated in association with WEEE Ireland.

Some guidelines

When putting items out for collection remember:

  • Keep the old items tidy, inside you garden, or on the kerb so the footpath or roadway is kept clear
  • If you think an unofficial collection are taking place, call us and we will arrange a collection from your door
  • Move items to the ground floor to allow for speedy collection
  • Let us know if items cannot be easily and safely lifted by two people.
  • Notify us advance if you have a request.
  • Do not leave sharp or dangerous objects with your electrical or pure metal items
  • Items should be secured if severe weather is expected
Old Metal Gates

What next?

Recycle IT are asking resident groups or tidy town groups to contact us in New Year. Give us a call on 01 4578321 to help declutter homes safely and reduce environment harm simply by recycling in an authorised way.

In the Interest of health safely and wellbeing please note – All items need to be accessible, disconnected and ready for collection. We will be following social distancing guidelines. We are happy to collect the item/s from a drive or garden / outside area / accessible & clear external location. Please remain mindful of social distancing and hand hygiene guidelines when recycling.

About Recycle IT 

Recycle IT, is a social enterprise offering electrical, electronic and metal recycling services through drop off and collection. Services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland and South Dublin County Council. Recycle IT are supported by Pobal and Dormant Accounts and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Leinster.

To find out about other items which might be suitable for reuse, repurposing or recycling please click here.

For more information on Recycle IT please call 01 4578321, email info@recycleit.ie or visit our website www.recycleit.ie

Growing a tree in a pot