Recycling residents are being thanked for their support as figures show the city’s ‘Check before you chuck’ campaign is having a significant impact.

Since the campaign began at the end of January, City of Wolverhampton Council has seen a steady reduction in the amount of contaminated household bins. 

Initially, up to 14% of recycling bins were tagged as contaminated, but this week’s average shows this had dropped to less than 4%. 

No loads of waste have been rejected by our recycling facility and due to the increased quality of our recycling this year, the council has not had to pay any additional disposal costs, therefore saving taxpayers money. 

The council is thanking all residents who are supporting the ongoing campaign to improve the quality of recycling put in household bins.

It has also taken on feedback received from residents via our social media channels and during door-to-door visits about ways to make recycling clearer.

This has included providing short films on social media about trickier or confusing items, expanding details about specific materials on our webpage and making updates to bin tags based on the items crews were finding in bins.

Members of the waste services team are also carrying out visits to residents who have not had their bin collected on more than one occasion to offer advice and a guidance leaflet. 

‘Check before you chuck’ was launched due to a significant increase in the number of incorrect items being placed in recycling bins. This contamination is costing taxpayers more than £185,000 a year to deal with, money that could be better spent on other services.

Under the campaign, educational messages have been shared through local newspapers and radio stations, on billboards and via electronic road signs. Posters and leaflets have been put in public and community venues, information included in council and community newsletters and presentations given at public meetings.

The education and awareness campaign will continue over the coming weeks and residents are reminded that if they receive a tag, they can either remove the contaminants and present their bin again on their next scheduled collection, put them in their general household waste bin or take their waste to one of the city’s Household Waste Recycling Centres (tips).

Councillor Bhupinder Gakhal, cabinet member for resident services at City of Wolverhampton Council, said: “A huge thank you to all of our residents who are supporting our ‘Check before you chuck’ campaign, we are extremely pleased with the response and delighted that people have seen what we’re trying to achieve.

“The past week’s figures show that more than 95% of our householders are helping out by putting the right thing in their bins. We really want to encourage everyone else to join us in helping to save money and protect the environment.

“We know that recycling can be confusing and we have taken on board feedback from residents about this. We will be continuing to look for ways to share education and awareness.

“Once again, we would like to thank everyone who checks before they chuck. We really appreciate your support in helping to make Wolverhampton a cleaner and greener city.”

Items for recycling should not be bagged, but make sure they are clean and dry and put loose in your recycling bin.

Items that CAN go into recycling bins are: aerosols, cardboard, drink cans, foil packaging, food tins (empty and rinse out), glass bottles and jars (empty and rinse out), household plastic bottles, newspapers and magazines, paper, plastic drinks bottles (please empty, squash down and replace lids), empty plastic packaging (margarine tubs, yoghurt pots, food trays) and empty food and drink containers (soup, juice, long life milk, etc.)

Do NOT put any of the following in your recycling bin: plastic bags, cling film, polystyrene, takeaway pizza boxes, nappies, tissues/paper towels, garden waste, textiles, clothing, bedding, electrical items, glittery cards, wrapping paper, laminated paper, shiny metallic paper, ribbon and bow decorations, shredded paper or any other general waste.

If you’re in any doubt about whether an item can be recycled, please DO NOT place it in your black bin.

Residents can also find a simple guide to what can and can’t be recycled by visiting What goes in my bins?