COVID-19 - Impact on waste and recycling services

If you have coronavirus symptoms you should put used tissues in a separate bin bag, tie it securely and leave it for 72 hours before putting it into their wheelie bin.

 

Household waste and recycling centres

The Scottish Government has announced a relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions and from 1 June, visiting a Household Waste and Recycling Centre will be a reasonable excuse to leave home.  We are working with our contractor SUEZ to agree a plan to reopen sites in Aberdeen. Some changes will be necessary to maintain safety and maintain physical distancing and these will likely include changed or reduced opening hours, restrictions on type or volume of materials accepted at sites, and traffic restrictions.  

Once Household Waste and Recycling Centres are open, you should only make a trip if your waste cannot be stored safely at home and no alternative disposal options are available.  

Please check the website for up to date information before making a trip to a HWRC. 

Please visit our COVID-19 webpage for updates or follow us on Facebook or Twitter

 

Large item collection service

We are currently running a reduced large item collection service, a limited number of slots are available for booking. If no slot is available, please try again within 24 hours.  

Please do not leave items beside bins and ensure that large items intended for disposal are stored safely away from communal areas.

These temporary changes are necessary to protect staff and public, adapt to changing circumstances and deliver essential waste service with reduced resources and we appreciate your patience. 

 

Collection Calendar 

Aberdeen City Council has taken steps to prevent further spread of Coronavirus which resulted in a temporary suspension of mixed recycling and brown bin collections. We are now pleased to tell you that household mixed recycling and brown bin collections will start again although collection dates are changing. 

Collections of mixed recycling and brown bins will be every 4 weeks as follows:

  • Brown bins will be collected weeks beginning 6 April and 13 April; 
  • Mixed recycling bins will be collected weeks beginning 20 April and 27 April;

And thereafter each will be emptied on a 4-week collection cycle.

General waste bins will continue to be emptied every two weeks. 


Please help us by sharing this information with family, friends and neighbours, especially those who are unable to get updates online. Residents are asked if they are able, so long as social distancing is observed, to print out a copy of the new calendar for vulnerable neighbours.

 

Frequently asked questions

More information is available in our frequently asked questions below:

All household waste and recycling centres in Aberdeen have been closed to the public because they were not on the list of essential journeys provided by the Scottish Government. The Scottish Government has announced that from 1 June visiting a HWRC will be a reasonable excuse for leaving home.  

We are working closely with our contractor SUEZ to agree how we can open the sites safely. Some changes will be necessary to maintain safety and maintain physical distancing and these will likely include changed or reduced opening hours, restrictions on type or volume of materials accepted at sites, and traffic restrictions. Residents should check the Council website for the latest information before travelling to a HWRC. Please stay updated by visiting our COVID-19 webpage for updates or follow us on Facebook or Twitter. 

If you have a large item that you need to dispose of you can arrange a large item collection or store it safely away from communal areas until the HWRCs reopen.  

Plans are underway to open HWRCs on 1 June however there will be changes to normal operations.  

Some changes will be necessary to maintain safety and maintain physical distancing and these will likely include changed or reduced opening hours, restrictions on type or volume of materials accepted at sites, and traffic restrictions. Residents should check the Council website for the latest information before travelling to a HWRC. 

Please stay updated by visiting our COVID-19 webpage for updates or follow us on Facebook or Twitter. 

If you have a large item that you need to dispose of you can arrange a large item collection or store it safely away from communal areas until the HWRCs reopen.  

New ways of working, designed to protect staff, mean collection operations are slower. The waste service is also working with reduced resource due to coronavirus and has now enlisted assistance from other Council areas.
 

It is difficult to predict the future impact of coronavirus and therefore it is unknown when collections will return to their normal frequency. The temporary calendar ends in November however the actual end date is unknown. New calendars will be prepared when if and when collections return to normal.

It is difficult to predict the future impact of coronavirus and whether any further changes to services will be necessary.

Please visit our COVID-19 webpage for updates or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

Please help us by sharing this information with family, friends and neighbours, especially those who are unable to get updates online.

Please store your recycling where it is safe to do so. 

Please make the most of the space available in recycling bins and some tips on how to do this are given below.  

Tips for making the most of the space in your recycling bin: 

  • Flatten cardboard such as cereal boxes and washing powder boxes 
  • Squash plastic bottles and put lids back on to keep them squashed 
  • Squash food and drink cartons 
  • Put paper and foil in a separate, flat pile rather than scrunching up into balls 
  • Stack foil trays and plastic pots tubs and trays 
  • Squash (but don’t flatten*) tins and cans if possible 
  • Cut up large cardboard boxes and put pieces in a flat pile 
  • Push materials down in your recycling bin to remove air pockets  

*Flattening cans completely makes them difficult for our sorting equipment, pinching or squeezing them to reduce their volume is fine.  

Excess recycling may be taken to a local Recycling Point. Recycling points are still available at many supermarkets and shopping centres but you should not make special trips to use them. Instead, you could use them while you are doing your essential shopping, in line with Government guidance. Please clean your hands before and after use if possible.  

Find out more about recycling points. 

You are encouraged to compost at home as a supplement to your brown bin collection. 

Find out more about home composting

Please visit the love food hate waste website for hints and tips for reducing food waste and using up leftover food. Also, apps such as Supercook can  help recipes ideas, based on the ingredients available. 

Residents should put food waste in their brown bin or their general waste bin – whichever is due for collection next.  

Some food waste can be home composted. Find out more about home composting.
 

No, excess will not be uplifted. This is to protect collection staff by reducing contact with waste, a particular risk at this time. Also, the service is working with reduced resource currently and picking up extra waste would add time to routes, reducing our ability to deliver essential services. 

Simple tips to reduce your waste

  • Avoid food waste - visit Love Food Hate Waste or use apps such as Supercook
  • Shop smart – use reusable fruit and veg bags, bring your bags for life
  • Mend, repair and upcycle – give your stuff a longer life! Learn new skills and get your kids involved. 
  • Donate your unwanted clothes, books and toys to a local charity
  • Avoid single use packaging such as takeaway trays or water bottles
  • Use reusable personal care products such as cloth nappies and menstrual products
  • Help your garden grown - find out more about home composting
  • Stop unwanted mail using Mailing Preference Service and Royal Mail 
  • Sign up for electronic bills and statements. 

For more hints and tips on waste reduction visit the Greener Scotland website


 

Brown bin collections will resume on the Monday 6 April 

The new service is intended to be temporary in order to understand how the Council can deliver services whilst following the measures imposed by the UK government. Until the impact of this is understood, no decisions will be taken on issuing refunds. 
 

Any additional items left beside bins will not be collected. 

Simple tips to reduce your waste

  • Avoid food waste - visit Love Food Hate Waste or use apps such as Supercook
  • Shop smart – use reusable fruit and veg bags, bring your bags for life
  • Mend, repair and upcycle – give your stuff a longer life! Learn new skills and get your kids involved. 
  • Donate your unwanted clothes, books and toys to a local charity
  • Avoid single use packaging such as takeaway trays or water bottles
  • Use reusable personal care products such as cloth nappies and menstrual products
  • Help your garden grown - find out more about home composting
  • Stop unwanted mail using Mailing Preference Service and Royal Mail 
  • Sign up for electronic bills and statements. 

For more hints and tips on waste reduction visit the Greener Scotland website
 

Many caddy liner distribution points are now temporarily closed in response to the latest government advice on the coronavirus. 

As an alternative to caddy liners you can: 

  • Use an ice cream tub or other container to collect your food waste and then tip it directly into your communal food waste bin or brown bin.  
  • Wrap food scraps in newspaper or paper towels and put directly into your communal food waste bin or brown bin.  
  • Uncooked food such as fruit and vegetable peelings can be home composted 

With the closure of the Household Waste and Recycling Centres and reduced availability of bulky uplift slots, residents should ensure that large items intended for disposal are be stored safely, away from communal areas, for now.    

Please do not leave anything next to bins either on street or at recycling points. 

New ways of working, designed to protect staff, mean collection operations are slower. The waste service is also working with reduced resource due to coronavirus and has now enlisted assistance from other Council areas. 

Yes, assisted uplifts of general waste (black bins) will continue as normal.  

Yes, on street bins will continue to be collected, however, we are working with reduced resource so there may be delays and appreciate your patience. 

Garden and food waste collections (brown bins) were temporarily suspended in order to understand how the Council can deliver services whilst following the measures imposed by the UK government. Brown bin collections restarted from 6 April on a reduced frequency.

No decisions regarding refunds will be taken until the impact of any changes is fully understood.

No, you must buy a permit and attach it to your bin before garden waste can be collected. Link to 

Buy a garden waste permit

Recycling points are still available at many supermarkets and shopping centres but you should not make special trips to use them. Instead, you could use them while you are doing your essential shopping, in line with Government guidance. Please clean your hands before and after use if possible. 

Please note that all bin flaps have been temporarily removed to minimise contact and prevent the spread of Coronavirus.

You should not leave anything beside the bins at recycling points

Operators are unable to service clothing banks at this time. Emptying of the banks is not considered an essential service.

To keep the public and staff safe, no collections will be made.

Please hold on to any items you wish to donate and do not leave any items next to the banks. It will not be reused or recycled, this is fly tipping. 

All bin flaps have been temporarily removed to minimise contact and prevent the spread of Coronavirus. Please clean your hands before and after using the recycling point if possible.  
 

It is difficult to predict the length and impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Please visit our COVID-19 webpage for updates for follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

Please help us by sharing this information with family, friends and neighbours, especially those who are unable to get updates online.

No, the permit must be attached to your bin for garden waste to be collected. Crews will only collect garden waste from your bin if a permit is attached.

There is a temporary suspension on requests for additional bins to allow us to prioritise the delivery of essential services with reduced resources. We appreciate your patience during this time.  
 


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