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Rubbish dumping jeopardises future of recycling depot

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A surge in general rubbish being dumped at the Martin Place recycling depot in Havelock North is preventing legitimate plastics, cardboard, paper and tins from being recycled.

People from all over the region are coming to Martin Place to dispose of waste that’s not recyclable, the impact of which is putting the future viability of the collection centre at risk.

In recent weeks rubbish ranging from empty plastic bags and unrecyclable 3-7 trays and plastics, to whole rubbish bags full of waste, polystyrene, and swathes of house removal bubble wrap packaging has been dumped at the depot.

The Hastings District Council knows where some of the offenders come from, as amongst all the rubbish are envelopes and other items with people’s names and addresses on them.

Where such rubbish can be traced, these people will be contacted by the council requesting them to ensure they are dealing with their own rubbish appropriately and not abuse the Martin Place recycling site with their illegal dumping.

On average, the contractors are finding that 29 per cent of the recyclable material is being contaminated from this other rubbish, resulting in a significant cost to sort and dispose of it properly.

When the levels of contamination get too high, all the recycling has to be rejected and taken to the landfill.

The scale of the problem is such that it may be necessary to close the depot if people continue to ignore the signage advising of what materials can be dropped off for recycling.

Currently a wider assessment of future options and costs for the existing facility is underway, and the council would prefer not to take interim actions (such as close the site) whilst this work progresses.

The council is calling on the community to take more care in order to ensure the service can remain and to prevent unnecessary waste ending up in the landfill.

4 July 2019

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