DB Green has organised a special recycling pick-up for used drink cartons (Tetra Pak-style cartons) and polystyrene and polyfoam on December 8 from 9 am to 11 am in Discovery Bay outside Hemingway’s.
While high-value glass, metal, plastic and paper is readily recycled through the existing bins in Discovery Bay, collection of some products —like cartons and polyfoam— has not been possible. “The challenge with used plastic is that the purchase value varies. Unsorted plastic is especially low in value,” says Tracey Read, founder of Plastic Free Seas. “Although it might seem that recycling plastic is not worth it, the more clean plastic that is separated properly, the more cost effective it will be for the recyclers to get it processed.”
Tetra Pak-style cartons are made from paperboard and thin inner linings of aluminium and polyethylene. This form of packaging is most commonly used for beverages. If separated into their components, the cartons are fully recyclable. Once collected and sorted, they are sent to the recycling plant where a hydra pulping process separates the paper from the polyethylene and aluminium. The paperboard is recycled into paper products and the remaining polyethylene and aluminium can be recycled into panel boards, roof sheets and much more. The paper processing occurs in Hong Kong, whereas the polyethylene and aluminium is processed abroad.
Because cartons have to be broken down into their components to be recycled, they are collected separately from other recycling. To correctly recycle used Tetra Pak-style packaging, follow the simple steps below:
1. Open the box flat (cut or rip on the seam).
2. Clean the inside (using dishwater is fine) and replace cap after washing.
3. Sort and separate the boxes by white lining and silver lining boxes. Boxes with a silver lining tend to have contained long life products, whereas boxes with white lining will have contained fresh products.
4. Dry and store flat.
To recycle polyfoam, which is usually take-away containers, cups and protective packaging, make sure it is clean, dry and remove any tape. Please see the photo below for examples of the polyfoam which is suitable for recycling.
You can recycle by dropping off your cleaned and sorted cartons and polyfoam to the DB Green representative at the outdoor seating area of Hemingway’s.
DBIS families should contact the school for more information about their own pick-up.
Stay tuned for more recycling opportunities in the future. DB Green hopes to organise recycling events with other DB schools in the fall.
• DB Green FB page, https://www.facebook.com/DBGreenHK/
• Plastic Free Seas, www.plasticfreeseas.org
Tags: DB Green, recycling, tetra pak, Polyfoam