What can we recycle?
Aluminium and steel cans
Aluminium is a very versatile and valuable metal which can be recycled over and over again without any loss of its properties. Aluminium drinks cans, aerosols, and foil (clean foil and food containers) can be recycled in the Can Recycling Banks.
As new cans are often back on the shelf just six weeks after you recycle the old ones, the energy savings quickly mount up. It takes one twentieth of the energy to recycle an aluminium can as it does to produce one from raw material (bauxite) extracted from the ground.
Not all cans are made from aluminium. Many drink and food cans are made from steel. These can be placed in the can banks along with aluminium cans. After collection the cans are sorted by machine, separated into aluminium and steel and baled prior to shipment to recycling companies in the UK.
The aluminium is accepted by Novelis in Warrington, Cheshire. Please use the link here for more information.
These are the most common type of household batteries (e.g. AA and AAA) and are used in a wide variety of appliances.
Dry-cell batteries come in two main types and contain different metals which can be recovered for re-use through the recycling process:
- Non-rechargeable - e.g. Zinc chloride & Mercuric oxide
- Rechargeable – e.g. Nickel cadmium & Lithium ion
As a householder, there are two ways to recycle your dry-cell batteries: At red battery recycling bins at your local Civic Amenity site. At selected stores across the Island including all Manx Co-op stores– deposit batteries in the collection units.
For further information on where and how are batteries are recycled please click here.
There are several sources of lead-acid batteries, the most common being cars and other vehicles, although some computer systems also use lead acid batteries.
Lead-acid batteries are classified as hazardous waste and therefore can only be transported off island by companies who have obtained the necessary authorisation.
Householders can dispose of their lead-acid batteries at the Civic Amenity sites.
Cardboard can be recycled at the Eastern and Western civic amenity sites where there are specific containers to collect cardboard. Please fold cardboard flat before placing in these containers.
If you wish to arrange for your cardboard to be recycled by other means, there are a number of on-island companies which recycle this material:
Doxbond, Telephone: +44 1624 670151
Buck Recycling, Telephone: +44 7624 497915
TELS, Telephone: +44 1624 611931
Please note: Collections/deliveries/charges by arrangement with the individual companies.
Fridges and Freezers
Fridges and freezers can contain chemicals called CFCs and HCFCs which, if released, damage the ozone layer. All fridge/freezer units therefore need to be taken to specialist facilities in the UK for recycling, where they are de-gassed (both coolant and foam blown insulation) and the scrap metals/plastic recovered. As this process is expensive, Isle of Man residents must pay for the cost of fridge recycling.
Some retailers may offer a 'collection on delivery' when purchasing a replacement fridge or freezer. Alternatively the Civic Amenity sites can accept these items for recycling. See the Civic Amenity page for opening times and prices (payment by debit card only).
Age-Isle of Man
Age operate a furniture shop at 73 Circular Road, Douglas and are able to collect furniture, suitable for resale from your home.
+44 1624 631740
Hospice 'Share the Care'
Hospice 'Share the Care' will collect items of furniture from your home, if they are suitable for resale at one of their Hospice furniture salerooms. All proceeds from Hospice shops and furniture salerooms go directly to help pay for patient care costs at Hospice IOM, and in the community.
+44 1624 647400
Alternately, reusable furniture can be taken to one of the reuse areas located at all Civic Amenity sites.
If your furniture is not suitable for re-use (e.g. it is in poor condition) then you can take it to a Civic Amenity Site for disposal. This is free of charge. If you are unable to access a Civic Amenity Site (e.g. you do not drive) then contact your Local Authority to ask if they offer bulky waste collections for householders.
Garden and kitchen waste
Organic waste is simply anything that has lived and died whether it be animal or vegetable. Green waste is also organic, but tends to refer only to 'green' garden waste such as grass cuttings and hedge clippings, etc.
Most household waste is organic - over 40% of the average domestic wheelie bin by weight. A lot of this waste could be kept out of the bin and either put in a domestic compost bin or a wormery to produce compost and liquid feed. One exception is waste meat/animal products. Because of the potential risk of passing on diseases associated with meat products, this waste type should only be managed in industrial type facilities such as the Island’s Energy from Waste facility.
Bottles and jars of all colours can be recycled at the Public Recycling Sites or via your Kerbside Recycling Scheme if you are taking part in Douglas or Braddan. Bottles and jars should be rinsed but the lid/cap can now be replaced since it will be recycled when the glass is processed.
Please note: Ceramics and glazing glass cannot be recycled through the Public Recycling Sites, so please do not deposit these glass types in the banks.
Glass is delivered to Corlett’s of Ballaharra, St Johns where it is processed to produce ‘Eco-sand’, a substitute for sand which would otherwise need to be extracted. For more information please visit the Corlett’s website.
Lamps and bulbs
All household lamps, bulbs and fluorescent tubes contain gasses and metals that allow them to make light.
Some of these gasses, for example mercury, can cause serious harm to the environment when they are released if the tube is shattered. It is vital therefore that all lamps, fluorescent tubes and bulbs are disposed of properly.
These can be recycled at the Civic Amenity sites for a small charge, or via Luminaires, a local company on the island, who have set up a bulb and lamp recycling scheme, in conjunction with Mercury recycling in the UK. For detail of costs etc please contact Luminaires directly on 01624 665801 or e-mail on firstname.lastname@example.org.
City Electrical Factors (Isle of Man) Ltd. are also able to offer a recycling service for tubes and lamps and can be contacted at https://www.cef.co.uk/branches/iom
Most metals, including steel, aluminium, stainless steel, copper and brass can be recycled at the Island’s Civic Amenity sites.
Steel in household waste is recovered after it has been through the incineration process. This post-burn metal is sent off Island for recycling.
There are a number of licensed companies who accept and pay for scrap metal (for example cars) for shipment and recycling off Island.
- Costains, Main Road, Foxdale
Telephone - +44 1624 801337
- Manx Metals (1983) Ltd., Balthane Industrial Estate, Ballasalla
Telephone - +44 1624 823606
- Northern Scrap Metals, The Old Airfield, Andreas
Telephone - +44 1624 880820
The Isle of Man Government pays a subsidy for scrap metal being shipped to the UK for recycling. For details of the Recycling Subsidy Scheme please contact Waste Management.
Contact the below charities to request a FREEPOST envelope.
+44 1624 647400
Small electrical waste
Small electrical items (e.g. vacuum cleaners, toasters, kettles etc.) and those operated by batteries (e.g. torches, radio’s, toys etc.) can be recycled at the Eastern and Northern (Balladoole) Civic Amenity sites.
There are two main grades of paper currently collected for recycling:
Household Newspapers & magazines
Items of household generated waste accepted at bring banks and kerbside collection in Douglas and Braddan:
YES PLEASE- Newspapers, glossy magazines, junk mail, soft-backed catalogues, white paper, white envelopes (with or without windows), telephone directories (1 per household), grey card (e.g. cereal packets, ready meal outer food sleeves, plain greetings cards but no batteries or glitter).
NO THANKS- Milk and drinks cartons, brown card and cardboard, plastic bags, wrapping paper & craft paper
Information on what happens to the paper which we collect is available.
Office white paper (also known as 'MULTIGRADE') is collected from offices and workplaces by commercial companies - this type of paper is collected by commercial recycling companies from offices, banks, and business. Both confidential and non-confidential paper is collected for shredding (if appropriate) and onward recycling. Local companies offering paper recycling services include Doxbond, Buck Recycling and Storall Ltd, details for which can be found in Manx Telecom Yellow Pages under Recycling.
Recycling one tonne of plastic bottles saves more than two tonnes of crude oil.
The kerbside collection scheme in Douglas and Braddan collects plastic bottles for recycling. Bring Banks for plastic bottles are also located at all Civic Amenity sites. Please remove bottle tops and try to crush the bottles (if you ask the kids, they are normally very happy to jump on them!). Crushing the bottles means we are able to collect up to twice as many before the bring bank or collection vehicle is full. Removing the lids means that they compact more easily and we are able to ship more bottles in each load that goes to be recycled. This saves energy and fuel and therefore helps save the planet.
For more information on how our plastic bottles are recycled please visit the Jayplas website.
Most carrier bags are made of plastic. Although these are very durable and can be reused many times, they do not break down if dropped as litter.
Some 'plastic' bags (for example Co-op bags) are now degradable which means they will break down over time.
All plastic bags can be reused. They can also be recycled at Tesco, Douglas (look out for the bag recycling container outside the main entrance). These bags are reprocessed into plastic film.
Stamps for charity
Textiles, clothes & shoes
Textile recycling is an excellent way to recycle clothes, reduce waste and generate money for charity. There are a number of different ways to recycle your unwanted clothes, so just choose one of the options most suitable for you:
- Charity shops
Drop your bags of clothes into your local shop (e.g. Hospice Isle of Man, Save the Children, Peel Charity Shop, Red Cross, Oxfam, Crossroads Caring for Carers). Clean clothes, shoes, belts & handbags are always welcomed and will be re-sold to raise much-needed funds.
Crossroads Caring for Carers now has 3 shops open in Douglas, with one in Prospect Terrace and two-in-one at 53 Victoria Street. The charity shop is downstairs and a new, specialist formal wear shop is upstairs. The formal wear shop acts like a dress agency where the charity takes a commission of 25% of the selling price with customers receiving 75%.
- Charity recycling banks
On the Island, we have great choice of charities to support through textile recycling banks. You can choose your favourite charity or share your clothes between them all! There are lots of these recycling banks at convenient locations across the Island (see link for map).
Every textile recycling bank supports a charity, which include Hospice Isle of Man, Isle of Man Anti-Cancer Association, Salvation Army & the MSPCA. More information about what happens to the Salvation Army collections can be found here.
- Home collection
there are regular door-to-door collections for textiles, which are carried out to raise funds for Isle of Man Anti-Cancer Association and Hospice Isle of Man. Large, labelled waterproof bags are delivered to selected areas across the island, which householders can then fill at home, to be placed on the doorstep for home collection.
For more information on Isle of Man Anti-Cancer Assoc. collections, please contact Manx Textile Recycling Ltd (Tel: 435779) the company which collects textiles on behalf of a number local charities. (Please see the bottom of this page for further details). For more information on Hospice Isle of Man home collections, please phone 615055.
- Animal rescue shelters
If you have any clean blankets and towels, please drop them off to the MSPCA or Mann Cat Sanctuary, as they are always needed, all year round.
The following information has been kindly provided by Manx Textile Recycling Ltd.
Manx Textile Recycling Ltd collects used clothing and textiles on behalf of a number of charities in the Isle of Man including the Isle of Man Anti-Cancer Association, Save the Children, Peel Charity Shop, Crossroads Caring for Carers and the Manx Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The company is a profit organisation which makes donations to charity based on the amount of clothing collected. MTR’s principal beneficiary is the Isle of Man Anti-Cancer Association and to date £22,000 has been donated to the charity. The charity provides funding for the Staywell Clinic at Noble’s Hospital, supports breast screening and raises awareness of early signs and symptoms of cancer. Collections are made from recycling bins at civic amenity sites, supermarkets and bring sites across the Island. MTR were also the pioneers of kerbside recycling when they began door-to-door collections in 2005. All the textiles collected are shipped to Northern Ireland where they are sorted and graded by Cookstown Textile Recyclers Ltd.
The clothing is then shipped to Africa where it is sold. If you have any unwanted clothes, shoes, handbags, towels, bed linen, even curtains, please call +44 1624 435779 to arrange for them to be collected.
Televisions and PC Monitors
Recycling schemes at each of the four Civic Amenity Sites have been expanded to include household electrical items (which are classified as hazardous electrical waste for disposal purposes.). There a small charge associated with recycling these items which is £6 for PC Monitors and £8 for Televisions.
The amount of goods recycled each year helps us to understand how much household electrical waste we are producing on the Island, which in turn informs our future waste strategy.