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Why can't we recycle plastic wrapping? (You can now)

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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    Cement plants? How does that work? Do they grind it up and mix it cement so that the end result is a 1 in 20 mixture of plastic?

    No. To make cement, you first need to make clinker. To make clinker, you need a kiln. To heat a kiln, you need materials for fuel that have a high calorific value.


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,868 ✭✭✭✭ cnocbui


    I used to dutifully separate recyclables. Then not long a go, Tipp CC recycling centre started charging for recyclables and all plastics and mixed paper go in the same bulk bin. As soon as this happened I concluded this stuff was not being recycled at all.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,409 ✭✭✭ YFlyer


    Padre_Pio wrote: »
    Films are very difficult to sort.

    There's dozens of plastics, but unlike metal, plastics of different types can have near identical weighs, densities, and colours, melting points, magnetic properties, spectral absorbsion etc etc which makes sorting tough at the best of times.

    Use a near infrared detector.


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    cnocbui wrote: »
    I used to dutifully separate recyclables. Then not long a go, Tipp CC recycling centre started charging for recyclables and all plastics and mixed paper go in the same bulk bin. As soon as this happened I concluded this stuff was not being recycled at all.

    It's not being recycled because the recyclables go in the same bin?


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 16,489 CMod ✭✭✭✭ faceman


    80% of what we recycle ends up in landfill or the ocean. We really need to ban single use plastics.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,409 ✭✭✭ YFlyer


    Wanderer78 wrote: »
    do we actually have concrete facts on all these 'facts'? im not living in some utopia thinking all our recyclables are actually recycled, but....

    Psst...the collected material in the recycle bins on college campuses around the country are thrown into the same skips as the material in the regular bins.


  • Registered Users Posts: 528 ✭✭✭ whodafunk


    Why is it recycling centres will take plastic packaging to recycle but our bin providers to the best of my knowledge do not recycle this?

    I wash out the items I put out for recycling when required but know lots of people who do not. If you think about it my recycling items will end up in with other 'dirty' material hence making mine in recyclable?

    Just my own thoughts on this matter.


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,868 ✭✭✭✭ cnocbui


    It's not being recycled because the recyclables go in the same bin?

    Obviously. No one is going to pay people 1st world pay rates to manually sort paper from plastics.

    Both would have calorific value if burned, so I suspect that's what now happens. The recycling centre used to collect paper egg cartons separate to other types of paper because it was used to make mulch for commercial mushroom growers. No more.


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    cnocbui wrote: »
    Obviously. No one is going to pay people 1st world pay rates to manually sort paper from plastics.

    All big waste management facilities have a picking line with people doing just that. Sending to landfill or for incineration is costly. If they can reduce that cost by separating out recyclables that they sell through brokers they will because it makes financial sense.
    cnocbui wrote: »
    Both would have calorific value if burned, so I suspect that's what now happens.

    Nothing everything has a high enough calorific value for use in a kiln because the temperatures they need to achieve. There are very strict specs for what is called Refuse Derived Fuel. Cement kilns don't just use waste in the kiln. What they use has to be an alternative fuel that can deliver high temperatures.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 350 ✭✭ Biodegradable


    YFlyer wrote: »
    Psst...the collected material in the recycle bins on college campuses around the country are thrown into the same skips as the material in the regular bins.
    That's what I suspect to, but you can't be sure of it! I saw the rubbish truck come along to collect the waste on college one day, and it did not seem like there was any recycling going on.


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  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 350 ✭✭ Biodegradable


    faceman wrote: »
    80% of what we recycle ends up in landfill or the ocean. We really need to ban single use plastics.
    Where did you read that?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,913 ✭✭✭ Padre_Pio


    YFlyer wrote: »
    Use a near infrared detector.

    Not worth the money when you can just burn the stuff.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 350 ✭✭ Biodegradable


    cnocbui wrote: »
    The recycling centre used to collect paper egg cartons separate to other types of paper because it was used to make mulch for commercial mushroom growers.
    As fertilizer?


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    Padre_Pio wrote: »
    Not worth the money when you can just burn the stuff.

    If you're a waste company that has to pay a sizeable gate fee for the incinerator, it very much is worth the money to reduce what you have to send to the incinerator.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,913 ✭✭✭ Padre_Pio


    If you're a waste company that has to pay a sizeable gate fee for the incinerator, it very much is worth the money to reduce what you have to send to the incinerator.

    Incinerators get paid to take waste and get paid for the energy they generate.

    Recycled centres get paid to take waste, but then have to separate and recycle it and sell it.
    Recycled plastics are worse quality that virgin, and cost about the same.
    No money in it unless governments and grants get involved.
    https://www.ptonline.com/articles/2017-a-mixed-bag-for-recycled-plastics-pricing-so-far


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    Padre_Pio wrote: »
    Incinerators get paid to take waste and get paid for the energy they generate.

    Recycled centres get paid to take waste, but then have to separate and recycle it and sell it.
    Recycled plastics are worse quality that virgin, and cost about the same.
    No money in it unless governments and grants get involved.
    https://www.ptonline.com/articles/2017-a-mixed-bag-for-recycled-plastics-pricing-so-far

    Yes, the incinerators get paid to take waste. By the waste companies who bring it to the incinerators.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,913 ✭✭✭ Padre_Pio


    Yes, the incinerators get paid to take waste. By the waste companies who bring it to the incinerators.

    Sorry, I misread your comment.

    I actually don't know what costs and options are open to waste companies. I mean, they have to get rid of it somewhere. We have domestic incinerators, but no domestic plastic recycling. I would have assumed incinerators are the cheapest option. Open to correction though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    Padre_Pio wrote: »
    Yes, the incinerators get paid to take waste. By the waste companies who bring it to the incinerators.

    Sorry, I misread your comment.

    I actually don't know what costs and options are open to waste companies. I mean, they have to get rid of it somewhere. We have domestic incinerators, but no domestic plastic recycling. I would have assumed incinerators are the cheapest option. Open to correction though.

    The bigger ones can produce RDF which can be used in cement kilns as a fuel. Ireland isn't big enough for plastic recycling to be economically viable so we're subject to the markets. Once upon a time, clear plastic wrapping was the highest value plastic on a per tonne basis. Not any more.

    But they do go through the general waste to recover recyclables cos the more that goes to landfill, the more it costs them. That's why the likes of Panda have installed cameras on recycling trucks, ie to reduce contamination of the recyclables by identifying the bins/houses where there was excessive contamination...like nappies in cereal boxes etc.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,409 ✭✭✭ YFlyer


    That's what I suspect to, but you can't be sure of it! I saw the rubbish truck come along to collect the waste on college one day, and it did not seem like there was any recycling going on.

    One of the cleaners mentioned it. They're not expected to separate out the waste from bags that are tainted.

    Its still promoted on campus. At least it may encourage students and staff to segregate their waste at home.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,289 ✭✭✭✭ whisky_galore


    victor8600 wrote: »
    Try to reduce your usage of plastics. Like use a canvas bag for shopping, and choose food items with less plastic wrapping.

    Easier said than done, esp when the price of plastic wrapped veg is cheaper than the exact same veg without wrapping. Super Valu I'm looking at you.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 18,983 ✭✭✭✭ kneemos


    According to this report only 9% of plastic ever produced has been recycled. With 79% ending up in landfill or discarded.

    https://www.recyclingtoday.com/article/plastics-production-use-disposal-study/


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,081 ✭✭✭ StupidLikeAFox


    I think you are all talking rubbish


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 16,489 CMod ✭✭✭✭ faceman


    Where did you read that?

    Numerous sources plus at an academic conference in Dublin recently. It’s a generally accepted fact and waste statistics are available for most regions.


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    faceman wrote: »
    Where did you read that?

    Numerous sources plus at an academic conference in Dublin recently. It’s a generally accepted fact and waste statistics are available for most regions.

    Afaik, the figure of just under 80% of all plastics ever made have been land filled or ended up in the ocean. That's not that surprising when you consider the timeframe.e that covers.

    But it's not the same as saying that 80% of what we put in recycling now ends up in landfill or the ocean.

    However, there is a significant level of contamination in recycling bins that means what should be recyclable ends up with general waste. The reason we're told to wash all containers going into the recycling is because if food is left in it, it will end up in general waste.

    Not sure if the level of contamination in recycling bins has gone up since pay by weight came in but I suspect it has.

    So it's not just about materials that can be theoretically by recycled but whether we put them in our bins in a way that facilitates that.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 350 ✭✭ Biodegradable


    faceman wrote: »
    Numerous sources plus at an academic conference in Dublin recently. It’s a generally accepted fact and waste statistics are available for most regions.
    If 80% of what we recycle ends up in landfill or the ocean, then how can it be that the below statement is true?
    kneemos wrote: »
    According to this report only 9% of plastic ever produced has been recycled. With 79% ending up in landfill or discarded.

    https://www.recyclingtoday.com/article/plastics-production-use-disposal-study/
    Bear in mind that recycling only came in relatively recently. It most certainly does not ad up.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 350 ✭✭ Biodegradable


    If you stuffed the bottle with soft plastics there would remove it from the recycling and it would go to general waste.
    No they would not. Think about it. They'd have to stop the entire conveyor just for one item and go poking around for 30 seconds or more. And that's if they'd even see it inside the bottle.

    Who told you that anyway? Don't believe everything you hear.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 350 ✭✭ Biodegradable


    Padre_Pio wrote: »
    There's dozens of plastics, but unlike metal, plastics of different types can have near identical weighs, densities, and colours, melting points, magnetic properties, spectral absorbsion etc
    Yeah, but seeing as they're so similar in properties isn't that all the more reason to just melt why them all down together and reuse??
    Padre_Pio wrote: »
    Films are very difficult to sort.
    By the sound of it they're not anymore difficult to sort than solid plastics!!! It's still a mystery to me!


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,449 ✭✭✭✭ Alf Veedersane


    Can it not just be melted down into like rigid plastic. It's not like it's made from a different polymer!

    I mean what if I were to shove a load of plastic wrapping from biscuits into a milk bottle. They'd never know. Would they?

    No. LDPE, for example, cannot be turned into HDPE by being melted down.


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,050 ✭✭✭✭ freshpopcorn


    Mod noteMoved from After Hours to Recycling & Domestic Waste Disposal please follow local guidelines


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  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 350 ✭✭ Biodegradable


    No. LDPE, for example, cannot be turned into HDPE by being melted down.
    But if they've the same melting point, and are the same colour, could they not just be melted down?


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