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How to reduce waste while HWRCs are closed

Hampshire’s Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) are now closed due the Coronavirus outbreak.

Councillor Rob Humby, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment at Hampshire County Council, said: “Household Waste Recycling Centres across the country are temporarily closing to the general public.

The Government’s advice is very clear on staying at home to reduce the risk of spreading Coronavirus, and we know that we should only be leaving our homes for a very limited number of reasons and not make any journeys which aren’t essential. Travelling to an HWRC is not an essential journey, which is why we took the decision earlier this week to close them until further notice.”

How to reduce waste, and what to do with waste produced while HWRCs are closed:

Recyclable waste

  • For larger recyclable items such as bulky cardboard boxes, wood and metal that you would normally have taken to the HWRC please try to minimise this waste in the first place and where this isn’t possible store these items in a secure place to avoid any risk of them catching fire.

  • Please continue to use recycling bins as normal rules with clean, dry and loose materials newspapers, cardboard packaging (A3 size and below. Please break larger cardboard packing down into smaller pieces), plastic bottles, food tins, drinks cans and aerosols.

Green waste

  • Please try to reduce the amount of garden waste produced where possible. However, if you do have to cut the grass or do other work in the garden and are unable to store it, consider the following options:

  • Leave the grass cuttings on your lawn as you mow. This helps the soil retain water and return the required nutrients back to your lawn as they decompose.

  • Dry grass cuttings can be used as a mulch for beds and vegetable patches. Apply a thin layer to reduce weeds and pests.

  • Garden waste and some kitchen waste can be composted at home. Information on how to compost can be found on the Smart Living website.

Please do not put lawn cuttings or hedge clippings in your ordinary waste collection bags.

Bulky waste items

  • Please try to avoid generating DIY or bulky waste in the first instance unless you are able to store it safely at home until it is possible to donate for reuse or dispose of safely.  The collection and disposal of ‘black bag’ and mixed recyclable waste from the kerbside are being prioritised at this time. Please do not place bulky waste in your ‘black bag’ waste.

  • You can find information on reuse and upcycling on the Smart Living website, which includes information on how to determine whether an item might be suitable for reuse by someone else.

Glass collection and recycling

  • Please check the website of your local district or borough council for the latest information regarding availability of kerbside glass collections (if provided in your area) and bottle banks.

Unwanted clothing and bric-a-brac items

  • Charity shops and HWRCs are now closed for the foreseeable future, any unwanted items will need to be stored at home until shops can reopen and textile banks can be serviced again.

  • Repairing or upcycling old or unwanted clothing is a fun and creative way to turn it into something new or unique. Find out more are:

Food waste

  • Have a look at the advice available from Smart Living to help make the most of the food you have and reduce food waste.

Please do not leave any waste outside the gates of the Household waste recycling centres. Leaving waste at the gates or anywhere else is fly tipping and is a criminal offence for which perpetrators will be prosecuted and fined up to £50,000.

Find out about the County Council’s zero tolerance approach to fly-tipping and work with partners:

How to dispose of personal waste if you have symptoms of coronavirus illness

Personal waste, such as used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths, should be stored securely in disposable rubbish bags. These bags should then be placed into another bag, tied securely and kept separate from other waste. Please put this bag aside for at least 72 hours, and then place it in your usual external household waste bin for kerbside collection.


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