How do you recycle?

Date published: 26 June 2020


Environment Minister, Edwin Poots, MLA is asking the public to help him shape how Northern Ireland recycles, collects and separates waste from households and businesses.

Minister Edwin Poots met Bryson Recycling’s Director Eric Randall and employee Philip Margaret, from a local collection team in Ballyclare, to see a kerbside box collection.
Minister Edwin Poots met Bryson Recycling’s Director Eric Randall and employee Philip Margaret, from a local collection team in Ballyclare, to see a kerbside box collection.

The Minister was speaking as he launched a 14-week consultation on the “Future Recycling and Separate Collection of Waste of a Household Nature in Northern Ireland”. 

Of the consultation, Minister Poots said: “This is an extremely important discussion document to ensure we increase recycling and maximise how we use and add value to our waste. Using waste well and using it again and again creates jobs, creates high-quality, low-cost recycled packaging and keeps waste out of our environment and in our economy.

“People in Northern Ireland have really embraced recycling and at a quicker pace than the rest of the UK – recycling over 50% of their household waste, 18 months ahead of our own and European targets.

“It’s an impressive milestone and one that I know that we can improve upon, but if we are to encourage householders and businesses to recycle more and indeed, ask them to use recycled products – we have to first understand what will make it easier, what the barriers are and how we can help. That’s what this consultation sets out to do. 

“This year businesses will see changes in how their waste is managed. In particular, businesses that produce mixed waste and waste which is similar in nature and composition to waste from households, such as paper, metal, plastic and glass, will be required present their waste for recycling and ensure it is separated.  Therefore it’s also critical that we hear from businesses to understand how we can help them recycle more, reduce their waste and use their waste better.

“The consultation is seeking views on a range of proposals, which will help shape the landscape of waste management in Northern Ireland and I would encourage as many responses as possible.”

It is important to note that this document is for discussion only, it does not introduce any new policies at this stage, and rather, we are seeking a broad range of views through responses to a number of questions. We welcome responses from all sectors, age-groups, organisations and individuals. A series of two hour workshops will take place to assist key stakeholders, details of which will be available in due course. 

The consultation opens today and runs for a 14 week period, closing on 4th October 2020 at midnight.

You can find the document and details of how to respond at

Notes to editors: 


  1. Responses can be completed online via Citizen Space, by email or by post.  Posted responses will take longer to be received due some DAERA buildings currently being closed. 
  2. Key stakeholders will receive a consultation letter on 25 June 2020 informing them in advance of the consultation going live.
  3. Queries regarding the consultation, the discussion document or any supporting material can be raised with Orla Ruddle on 028 9056 9746, or by email to
  4. Follow DAERA on Twitter and Facebook: and 
  5. All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office at:
  6. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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