New Zealand Nuance # 8: Rubbish

Just like in the UK, rubbish in New Zealand is sorted into landfill and recycling. Glass bottles must be kept separate and only certainly plastics can be recycled. Both landfill and recycling are emptied every other week.

But they don’t have a food waste bin. This struck me as odd as I had considered New Zealand to be a very environmentally conscious country but no, food waste goes into the landfill bin. If this seems too wasteful for you to cope with, you can check to see if there is a local allotment in your community who might allow you to deposit your food waste (no meat or bones of course) into their compost bins.

And it’s not the council who take your rubbish away. Believe it or not, you have to choose and pay for your bin company yourself. This means that on one street, you could see 3 or 4 different companies taking away the rubbish on different days, a process which seems staggeringly inefficient.

But the way the trucks pick up the rubbish in Waikanae Beach is brilliant. The trucks have steering wheels both sides and only one driver. There’s no-one running along side the truck as you’d see in the UK.

Photo courtesy of Wikapedia

As you can see from the photo above, the bins are picked up and emptied into the truck entirely mechanically, using a grabber on the side of the vehicle.

Now that’s efficient!


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