Recycling

Recycling has changed

For most councils in the Perth Metropolitan Area, there have been changes regarding what can and can’t be recycled in your yellow-topped bin. These changes are part of an effort to try and reduce contamination and make recycling easier for everyone to understand.

What are the major changes?

  • Aerosols can no longer be placed into the yellow-topped recycling bin
  • Soft (or scrunchable) plastics can no longer be placed into the yellow-topped recycling bin

For more information about changes to recycling, please visit the Recycle Right website.

  • Aluminium cans (clean & empty)
  • Steel cans (clean & empty)
  • Cardboard (flattened)
  • Paper (not shredded)
  • Plastic containers and bottles (clean & empty, lids removed)
  • Glass (clean & empty)

For more information about which items can be recycled, please visit the Recycle Right website.

After you put recyclable items into your yellow top bin, it is collected from your verge and taken to a materials recovery facility (MRF) for sorting and separation. The sorted plastics, paper, metals and glass are sold to companies who reprocess these materials into new products.

In Perth's eastern region, all materials from yellow top bins that can currently be recycled are reprocessed into new products(PDF, 371KB). What is reprocessed from your yellow top recycling bin is affected by what is put into the bin in the first place. Recyclables should not be tied up in plastic bags because it makes sorting difficult and can lead to some recyclables being sent to landfill instead of being recycled. Keep all items in your recycling bin loose and separate, and put your empty plastic bags into your green top bin.

Be careful not to contaminate the recycling process. Most people don't realise the problems created by putting even the smallest amount of non-recyclable material into the yellow top bin. For example, a piece of ceramic as small as a coin can cause a tonne of glass to be put into landfill instead of being recycled. Rocks in the bin can get caught up in the process and break machinery. These are called contaminants, so please don't put them in your bin.

Find out more about waste and recycling services in the City of Swan, including information on bin services, drop-off days and verge collections.

If you’re an organisation, business, club or any other professional body looking to hold an event within the City, contact City of Swan's Waste Recycling Services on 9267 9267 and request a supply of recycling bins for the day.

The City of Swan strongly encourages this as recycling is one of our top priorities. It reduces greenhouse gas emissions by lowering the amount of waste going into landfill. Find out more about the benefits of recycling and what recyclable items are suitable to go in the yellow lidded bin.

Public event bins are available at a cost of $18.25 incl GST (you will be invoiced separately for these). 

City of Swan recycling trucks take collected materials to the Cleanaway Material Recycling Facility in South Guildford.

In the 2017/18 financial year the City emptied 1,126,826 recycling bins and sent 10,276 tonnes of material to the recycling facility. Of this, 1,757 tonnes was found to be contaminated and then sent to landfill.

The following graph shows the type of material which was in recycling bins in the financial year 2017/2018.

Kerbside  Total (Tonnes)
Newspaper  1,632.45
Cardboard  2,318.89 
Mixed paper 2,148.41  
Total Paper  6,099.75
Glass  3,344.24 
HDPE Plastic 172.06
PET Plastic  175.60
 Other Plastic  268.30
 Aluminum Cans  81.67
 Steel cans 181.12 
Total recycled (tonnes) 10,276.05
Total contamination  1,757.23
 Population serviced 1,126,826.00 

Fast facts

  • Glass is 100 per cent recyclable. Over 30 per cent of the raw material used in current day glass production comes from recycled glass.
  • The energy saved from recycling one glass bottle is enough to light a 100 watt bulb for four hours.
  • Steel cans and steel scrap are recycled into new steel products including structural steel, nuts and bolts, coat hangers and more steel cans.
  • Recycling one tonne of steel saves 1,131kg of iron ore, 54kg of limestone and 633kg of coal.
  • A used aluminium can is recycled and back on the grocery shelf as a new can in as little as 60 days - that's "closed loop" recycling at its finest.
  • There is no limit to the amount of times an aluminium can is able to be recycled.
  • By recycling one kilogram of paper and cardboard, you reduce the production of greenhouse gases by one kilogram.
  • Each tonne of paper recycled saves almost 13 trees and four cubic metres of landfill space. It also saves 2.5 barrels of oil, 4,100 kWh of electricity and 31,780 litres of water from the manufacturing process of new products.
  • Making paper from recycled materials uses 99 per cent less water and 50 per cent less energy than if produced from raw materials.