Bin Tagging Program

Bin Tagging Program


Recently the City's Waste Services Department has noticed an increase in general waste and recycling items being placed into the incorrect bin for collection.

This has a direct impact on recyclable items ending up in landfill and non-recycling items contaminating resource recovery from kerbside collection each week.

In addition to the general information and educational programs provided by the City, Waste Services in conjunction with the Western Australian Local Government Association will be running a trial Bin Tagging Program during 2019.

The Bin Tagging Program focuses on reducing contamination and increasing resource recovery from the kerbside collection and has been funded by the Waste Authority through the Waste Avoidance and Resource Recovery Account.

What is Bin Tagging?

Bin tagging is a method of providing direct feedback on the content of waste and recycling bins to residents by placing a tag on each bin to indicate if the contents are appropriate.

The tags (example shown in the related documents section) provide specific feedback on the content of the bin as well as some general guidance on what can and can’t be placed in the kerbside bin.

Bin auditors conduct a simple visual assessment of the contents of each bin at the kerbside (prior to collection).

Data for each household is collected, based on this assessment.

Then a tag is placed on the bin, providing individualised feedback about the content of the bin.

Strategic Link and Program Objectives

As defined in the City's Strategic Community Plan 2016 - 2031, the City's future direction is built around four major goals with one of these major goals being Environment.

This program directly relates to the commitments the City has made in outcome 2.4 Best Practice Waste Management and two of this outcomes strategies:

  • 2.4.2 Maximise recycling opportunities
  • 2.4.3 Improve waste disposal practices

The Bin Tagging Program's main objectives are to:

  • Reduce contamination in household bins
  • Reduce waste going to landfill
  • Improve recycling rates within the City
  • Increase resource recovery from the kerbside collection.

Why is the City conducting a Bin Tagging Program?

In today's increasingly connected world, there is a constant supply of information about what to and what not to put into your household bins.

It can be hard to navigate through this information, as what you should or should not put in your bins always seems to change so quickly.

Generally the City's households are very good with their general waste and recycling practices. This is evident through the pride and enthusiasm the City witnesses in how residents go about managing their bins and how they are filled.

The City is conducting a bin tagging program to complement our householders efforts by updating them with relevant information for our City's waste collection services by providing direct feedback at a household level.

What areas are going to be tagged?

As this is the initial year of the program, bin auditors will be conducting assessments at randomly selected households across the City. 

When will bin tagging occur?

This year's program commenced on Tuesday 26 March 2019.

Sampling will occur over a six week period with three inspections per randomly selected household. 

It is expected for this year's program to finish around April 2019.

What are the Bin Auditors looking for?

The Bin Auditors are looking for materials that may be considered a 'contaminant' in your general waste and or recycling bin. 

Some examples of contamination if placed in the wrong bin are:

  • Nappies
  • Clothing
  • Strapping / rope / cable / hose
  • Hazardous wastes and Aerosols
  • Batteries
  • Needles / syringes
  • Containers containing food scraps
  • E-waste

What do the different colours and faces on my tag mean?

The tags are coloured to match the bin lid colours of the kerbside bins. For example, the City uses a green lid for the general waste bin and a yellow lid for the recycling bin. 

Although not applicable to all households at this time, a small number of households have a red lid on their general waste bin as the City has begun issuing bins in line with the Australian Standard for Bin Colours. If your household has a red bin lid and are randomly selected, your general waste bin will receive a green tag.

Each tag will have either a smiley face or a sad face depending upon the outcome of the check.

  • A smiley face with a 'Thank you' means you are doing the right thing.
  • A sad face with 'We ask one small favour' means there were one or two things identified to be fixed.
  • A sad face with 'We were not able to collect your bin today' means that the bin is heavily contaminated or contained dangerous items.

What happens if my bin is not contaminated?

Your bin will be marked with a smiley face tag as a thank you for your fantastic job. 

You are encouraged to keep up the good work with your excellent waste management practices.

If all households were like yours then we are well on our way to ensuring our objectives are met.

What happens if my bin is found to be contaminated?

Your bin will be marked with a 'we were not able to collect your bin today' tag and the City may not be able to collect your bin on that day.

If this occurs we will request for you to please remove the identified contaminated items from the bin.

Once this has been done, please contact Waste Services on (08) 9394 5000 to arrange for your bin to be collected on the next collection service.

What data is going to be collected?

Collecting and collating data is essential for the City to review any changes in kerbside rubbish behaviour and measure the program's success. Data that may be collected during the Bin Tagging Program is:

  • Whether the bin is contaminated or not contaminated
  • What type of contamination. For example, food waste or nappies in the recycling bin or recycling in the general waste bin.
  • Service usage. For example, how full the bins are that can be collected.
  • Bin condition and or general repair issues.

Information on contamination and service usage allows the success of the Bin Tagging Program to be measured.

By measuring types of contamination in the bin and service usage, Waste Services can further enhance future waste programs and information provided to households.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if I only had one thing wrong?

You may receive a tag on your bin where we ask you a favour to not place contaminants in your bin.

No one is perfect and we understand that this may just be a one off and does not reflect your normal waste practices.

We know it can be hard these days with all the different packaging and information available to know what is acceptable or not, this is why the City is undertaking the Bin Tagging Program.

I don't want someone looking in my bin.

The Bin Auditors are just doing a quick visual check to make sure the bin has the correct items in it; they are not there to look in detail at your disposed items.

If your bins are randomly selected and you are uncomfortable with the auditors conducting visual checks of your bins, please do not hesitate to contact the Waste Services Department on 9394 5000 to discuss the matter further.

 You cannot look in my bin, it is against privacy legislation.

Once you place the bins on the verge for collection, it is Local Government property and is not against privacy legislation. The City has authorised the bin auditors to conduct visual checks of the bin, the auditors are not there to look in detail at your disposed items.

Can I find out how the program went?

Upon completion of the Bin Tagging Program, the City will undertake a number of reviews to measure the success of this program against it's objectives and determine if there has been a reduction in contamination for the sampled households. These reviews will be collated into a report and presented to Council.

How can I provide feedback about the Bin Tagging Program?

If you wish to provide feedback about the bin auditors or the bin tagging program, please do so in writing attention to Waste Services: