Two local councils have revealed that contaminated recycling is costing them £230,000 a year to deal with.
Nearly 10 per cent of all recyclable materials collected through the burgundy bins in Bolsover District and North East Derbyshire are contaminated and have to be sent to landfill.
The two council’s burgundy bin service collects on average 15,000 tonnes of recyclable wastes each year, nine per cent of which is waste which should have been presented in black bins.
The cost of removing and disposing of this is approximately £170 per tonne.
Over the past couple of months an increase in contaminated waste such as food stuff, nappies and even dead animals have been found in burgundy bins, which has to be removed and sent to landfill.
It is believed that some households are hiding the contaminated waste by wrapping it up and placing it amongst the recyclable materials so they do not fill up their black bins.
Bolsover council’s cabinet member for the environment, Coun Dennis Kelly said, “I would like to stress the positive and say that our residents have been excellent recyclers for the most part so we thank them for that.
“But contamination is becoming a big problem. In recent months this has gone up quite a bit, usually because people don’t understand what goes in the bin but, in a small minority of cases, because they don’t care. We want to make sure that people know what can go in the bins so we can recycle as much as possible and keep up and increase our recycling rates.”