Man, I love a new recycling scheme! Remember how excited I got over the soft-plastic recycling bins at Coles? Well, hold onto your hats! There’s a new scheme in town!!
So you’ve got your empty bottle of cleaning product or hand wash. You unscrew the bottle and put it in the recycling bin, right? But what to do with the pump or trigger? To think this over, you head to the kitchen for a coffee and end up gazing at the empty Nespresso pod in your hand. Non-recyclable, right? In a haze of eco-guilt, you stumble into the bathroom, only to discover your toothpaste and floss are empty and your toothbrush worn through.
STOP! Don’t chuck all those non-recyclable items into the bin! Send them to TerraCycle to be upcycled or recycled into new products!!
The collections are organised into “Bridages”:
- The Oral Care Brigade: collect toothrushes, toothpaste tubes and caps, floss containers, toothpaste and toothbrush outer packaging.
- The Cleaner Packaging Brigade: collect handwash/bodywash pumps, laundry liquid taps, cleaning product triggers, perfume pumps, beauty product tubes, facial wipes/baby wipes packaging, the plastic around dishwasher tabs.
- The Nespresso Brigade: collect Nespresso (only) coffee pods.
Recycle for cash to your charity
I love this scheme and have, of course, already signed up to be a collection point. But I know a lot of people will say “hmmm, that’s nice, can’t be bothered.” This is where the genius of TerraCycle founder Tom Szaky comes in – to sweeten the deal (because saving the planet isn’t good enough for some people, ahem), you can claim points for the items you collect and send back to TerraCycle (postage is free). One item equals one point equals two cent to go to your selected school or charity.
Take that, mothers! How could you not sign up?
The funding for the donation comes from sponsors like Nature’s Organics, Colgate and Nespress, which means the companies making the non-recyclable waste are paying for it. Brilliant, hey?
Here’s how it works
- Read all about it here.
- Sign up for whichever brigades you want.
- Get a bucket, box or bag.
- Tell everyone you know you’re collecting these items.
- Download a free-postage label.
- Recycle a cardboard box and send all your collected items to TerraCycle.
- Your points will be tallied and added to your account.
- Donate your hard-earned money to your kids’ school and live a long and happy life.
In case you’re wondering, here’s what TerraCycle makes with all the bits of “unrecyclable” plastic we collect: plan pots, cute watering pots, park benches, bags and plastic containers. When those products have reached their end of life, they can be returned to TerraCycle to be recycled into something else. Check out the TerraCycle shop to see the full range of products. This short video about the Drink Pouches Brigade in the US gives a great insight into the company and how it operates.