Your Recycling Bins

To help keep resources out of landfill and continuing to be used in our economy, houses in the NPDC kerbside collection area have two recycling bins: a 240 litre mixed recycling bin, and a 60 litre glass crate.

By recycling you help save energy, greenhouse gas emissions, water and the use of new resources. Find out how to prepare your recycling and what goes in your two recycling bins below.

If you are unsure on whether something is recyclable, search in the Recycling Guide, or within the free NPDC Recycling and Rubbish app that you can download from the Google Play Store or Apple App Store.

recycling banner

During alert level three safety requirements around Covid-19 means the mixed recycling will have to go to landfill until we reach Alert Level two. We know this isn’t ideal but these are unprecedented times and sorting recycling is a high-touch job with thousands of tonnes of household recycling to wade through. If you want to, you can keep storing them until they can be recycled at Alert Level 2 but we understand if you don’t have space to store them.

Although the contents will go to landfill, only put recyclable items in your yellow-lid bin. We want to keep good recycling habits so there are no issues with collection when we change to level two.

It’s important that only the following items are placed in your yellow recycling bin: 

  • Paper
  • Cardboard (flatten, remove tape)
  • Egg cartons
  • Plastic bottles with numbers 1 – 7 in a triangle (remove lids, rinse, do not squash)
  • Plastic containers with numbers 1 – 7 in a triangle (remove lids, empty and clean)
  • Plastic cleaning bottles with numbers 1 – 7 in a triangle (remove lids, empty and rinse)
  • Tin cans
  • Aluminium cans
  • Empty aerosol cans (remove lid).

These items can not go in your recycling bin: 

  • Drink cartons, juice and milk boxes
  • Coffee cups
  • Plastic bags
  • Expanded polystyrene (even with a '6' in a triangle)
  • Soft plastic packaging and film
  • Packaging made of more than one material
  • Nappies
  • Lids less than 10cm in size
  • Batteries
  • Medical waste
  • Clothes, toys, shoes
  • Large plastic items, toys
  • Pots, pans, large metal items
  • Electrical items
  • Garden waste.

Other tips:

  • Empty and rinse containers to remove liquids and food scraps.Dirty containers go to landfill, and having them in your recycling bin may mean your recycling is not collected.
  • Leave items loose and unbagged. Items need to be separated so that they can quickly and easily be sorted in the recycling centre, items that are stacked together may end up in landfill. Plastic bags clog up our sorting machinery.
  • Leave plastic bottles unsquashed so that our machinery can sort them.
  • Lids that are smaller that 10cm cannot be recycled, please place these in your landfill bin. Labels do not need to be removed.

How do I keep my recycling bin lid closed?

You can get a free bin latch from any NPDC Service Centre to keep your recycling bin securely closed. Watch a video on how to attach your bin latch, or download the visual instructions for attaching your bin latch. Please place no more than one latch on the recycling or landfill bin.

Leave the latch in place on your bin when it’s at the kerb. When the recycling truck picks up your bin and tips it upside down, the weight of what’s inside will then force the latch open.

To ensure your latch works please make sure you have at least 2.3 kilograms of recycling inside. If you have less than this amount, don’t secure the latch when you put out your bin.

Where to put your recycling bin:

Your yellow recycling bin is picked up by the mechanical arms of a recycling collection truck. To make sure your bin can be emptied, ensure that it is at least 30cm away from any other bin or crate, and 1m from any cars, fences or trees. Do not place your bin below a tree, unless there is a 3m clearance between the top of the bin and the foliage.


guidelines for the mixed recycling bin
glass bin

Please feed your glass crate only clean glass with no lids, including:

  • Glass bottles
  • Glass jars

These items can not go in your glass bin: 

  • Full bottles
  • Dirty jars
  • Window glass
  • Broken glass
  • Light bulbs
  • TV or computer screens
  • Drinking glasses
  • Pyrex or other glass cookware.

Please don't overfeed your glass crate.  Glassware stacked over the inside line can fall and smash, and will be too heavy for the collector to pick up.  If you have more glass than your crate can handle, try asking your neighbours if they have some extra space or take it to a transfer station for recycling which is free of charge. 

guidelines for what does and does not go in your glass bin

Glass and mixed recycling information

Why is glass separated from recycling?

We keep glass separate from mixed recycling to avoid the risk of broken glass fragment contaminating other recyclables, which means we can recycle more. This also makes recycling collection safer for our kerbside collectors and drivers.

Where do my recyclable items go?

Once recyclable items are sorted and baled at our Material Recovery Facility on Colson Road, they are generally sent to the following locations:

  • Aluminium and steel cans are sent overseas for reprocessing into new metal products.
  • Glass is sent to Auckland for reprocessing into new bottles and jars.
  • Paper and cardboard are sent to a paper mill in Auckland to make new carboard products.
  • PET plastic (grade 1) is recycled into new food packaging in Lower Hutt.
  • Milk bottles are recycled both on and off shore, depending on markets.
  • Most other mixed plastics (grades 3-7) are sent off shore for recycling, but we are working on local solutions such as trialling the use these plastics in road surfaces as a substitute for oil.

If you would like to learn more about recycling you can arrange a tour of the Material Recovery Facility via the Sustainable Taranaki website.

Other recycling collections

A number of other free or commercial recycling collections are available for households and businesses for items not collected in kerbside recycling or glass bins. These include batteries, mobile phones, screens and other e-waste, lightbulbs, toner cartridges, scrap metal, cooking oil, oil filters, paint and other items. Find out more on the Zero Waste Taranaki Directory.

To find out about recycling electronic waste, go to our e-waste page.