Waste tips to help you make the most of home and garden

From home composting in a cardboard box to ensuring you store different foods in the places that will keep them fresh longest, there are dozens of ways to make the most of what we’ve got and reduce waste as we stay home to combat the spread of Covid-19.

Bug hotel

North Yorkshire County Council’s waste management team has compiled a wealth of advice and tips to help everyone to reduce waste, make the most of food supplies and reuse things they might otherwise throw away. All this advice can be found on our waste reduction tips page.

County Councillor Andrew Lee, Executive Member for Waste Management, said: “At Easter, people may think of doing work in their gardens or around the home that could create waste that in normal times we would welcome at our household waste recycling centres.

“These recycling centres are temporarily closed. This was the sensible decision to protect the public and our staff and to cut non-essential travel in support of the Government’s Stay Home Save Lives drive. We thank people for their understanding of this decision and to support it ask them to avoid gardening or DIY projects that could create waste they can’t dispose of.

“Our new web page offers advice on how to avoid or reuse waste as well as suggesting activities that could occupy families over Easter.”

Suggestions range from making the most of your fridge and freezer to mending clothes and making a bug hotel.

Service Improvement Officer Jenny Lowes said: “People might be surprised by how much difference simple actions can make.

“For example, we all know that meat, pizza and ice cream can be frozen, but there may be a few foods that surprise you. Eggs, milk, bread, cheese – in fact, almost anything can be frozen. And different foods do better in different places, so knowing where to store them is important.

“If you have a favourite jumper or socks that need mending, now might be the time to take up the ancient art of darning. There are lots of creative examples and videos online.

“It you start home composting, as a North Yorkshire resident you can buy compost bins for as little as £9 via GetComposting. Cardboard boxes can be torn up and composted or, if you don’t have a compost bin, use the cardboard box as a starter home compost bin and fill it up.

“If you have waste timber, you could turn it into a bug hotel. Again, there’s plenty of advice online.

“You’ll find lots of information and helpful links on our web page, so please take a look. And finally, please don’t undertake large DIY, decluttering or garden projects that will produce a lot of waste, unless you can store the waste, and please don’t put large items that do not fit into your wheeled bin out for collection. Collection crews will only take what is placed inside the bin.”

Kerbside refuse and recycling collections are carried out by district and borough councils. Check your borough or district council website for updates. Any enquiries about these collections should be made to your district or borough council.

This story was published 7 April 2020