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Plastic Recycling Changes from Monday

Published: 14 May 2019

Last Updated: 22 May 2019

NCCMAY19 Plastic Recycling Changes Website Tile 555wx370h v2 after

From next Monday (20 May) only plastics marked with a 1 or 2 will be collected by Napier City Council’s recycling contractor.

The international market for recycled plastics has changed rapidly, with China and Malaysia deciding not to take any from New Zealand. This means all councils around New Zealand have had to reconsider the way they manage their cities’ recycling.

All other clean recycling – paper, cardboard, tin and aluminium cans, glass bottles and jars – will be collected as usual. A further change is that any recycling put out in plastic bags will no longer be accepted.

Council asks residents to check the numbers on plastics carefully, as all plastics numbered 3 to 7 will now have to go out with the general rubbish. “Unfortunately this is going to increase the volume of waste going to the Omarunui landfill. We hope a nationwide solution will be found soon, but in the meantime we can only collect what can be recycled,” says Jon Kingsford, Director Infrastructure Services, Napier City Council.

We encourage consumers to reduce the amount of non-recyclable materials by purchasing items without packaging, or with recyclable packaging, he says.

Key things to remember: Only plastics numbered 1 and 2 will be collected for recycling in Napier. No plastic bags to be used for recycling. Paper, cardboard, glass, aluminium and tin collection unchanged

Changes to recycling has also increased costs. In the Draft Annual Plan 2019/20, for which the month-long consultation closed yesterday, Napier residents and ratepayers were asked how they would like to pay for the increase in cost to their annual recycling charges.

The sharp increase to kerbside recycling costs to $72 per year per property has meant that Council has had to absorb the extra cost above the $19 per year that households currently pay. The kerbside recycling cost is projected to increase up to approximately $95 per household.

The question for Napier residents and ratepayers in this consultation has been whether Council continues to use its reserves to pay the higher costs, or whether they would be happy to pay the full cost from the start of the next financial year, on 1 July.

The part-pay option, which Council prefers, would add $2.62 per week per household, keeping the average rates increase for the 2019/20 year to 6.4%.

The Annual Plan is due to be adopted on 28 June.

Key things to remember:

  • Only plastics numbered 1 and 2 will be collected for recycling in Napier
  • No plastic bags to be used for recycling
  • Paper, cardboard, glass, aluminium and tin collection unchanged
  • NCC’s contractor can only collect what can be recycled
  • Reduce the amount of recycling by purchasing items without packaging, or with recyclable packaging.

For more information about recycling, visit

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