The Council provides a broad range of services on a daily basis. A full list of services and contact details can be obtained here (A-Z Council Services).
Recycling and Waste Management
WASTE MANAGEMENT SERVICES
Ballymena Borough Council's new waste management services has now been rolled out and aim to significantly increase the borough's recycling levels and reduce the amount of waste going to landfill.
PLEASE SEE NEWS SECTION OF THE WEBSITE FOR A COMPLETE LIST OF ARRANGEMENTS FOR CHRISTMAS 2013/ NEW YEAR 2014.
The roll out of the weekly red and black 'Kerbie' box collection will effectively double the opportunity for residents to recycle mixed dry recyclables.
Brown bins have been delivered to more than 20,000 local homes and these can e used to recycle most garden waste. The alternate weekly collection of black landfill bin and brown garden waste bins started from week commencing 16th June 2008.
Anyone who owns a dog or puppy must have a dog license. This should be purchased before taking possession of the animal. The license provides proof of ownership and is a legal requirement under the Dogs (NI) Order. Once you have registered the dog with the council, you will a license and disc which bears the dog’s very own personal identification number.
Stay dogs can be identified from the disc, which allows them to returned to their owners as quickly as possible.
A puppy that remains with its mother must have a license by the age of six months. Full details of the application process are available by contacting 02825 660332.
PLEASE SEE NEWS SECTION OF THE WEBSITE FOR A COMPLETE LIST OF HOLIDAY ARRANGEMENTS FOR CHRISTMAS 2013/ JANUARY 2014.
The refuse collection service is provided on a weekly basis to approximately 25,000 households within the Ballymena borough with the service consisting of eight refuse collection vehicles and twenty operatives.
Over the past number of years Council has endeavored to keep to a minimum the number of collections missed due to Public and Bank holidays and a list of these holidays when the refuse collection service works normally are:
May Day - collection as normal May Bank holiday - collection as normal August Bank holiday - collection as normal
Alternate Weekly Collections
Ballymena Borough Council launched alternate weekly collections (AWC) for black waste bins and brown garden waste bins in June 2008. This will reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill and encourage people to recycle more. All other councils in the arc21 waste group have already introduced this system.
AWC means that the brown and black bins will be collected on alternate weeks i.e. one week the black bin is emptied, the following week the brown bin is emptied etc. Please not e the brown collection day will now be the same as the black bin day but on alternate weeks.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Alternate Weekly Collection (AWC) Scheme?
Ballymena Borough Council has changed bin collections to an alternate weekly collection scheme. Many other NI councils have already introduced similar schemes and are operating without problems.
The reason for introducing this change is to try to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill and to encourage people to recycle more. Currently in the borough all the recycling schemes have a participation rate of approx 50%, meaning that half the borough are not regularly using the recycling facilities provided. If we expect to meet the NI Landfill Allowance Scheme targets we need to drastically increase our recycling activities so that as much waste as possible can be diverted from landfill. If we do not meet these targets the council will face fines from the EU and this will be reflected in householder’s rates.
Why is Ballymena Borough Council introducing the Scheme?
The Council introduced the alternate weekly collection scheme to make recycling more convenient and accessible for its ratepayers and to divert waste away from landfill. Only in this way can the council meet the waste diversion targets laid down by the European Union and Central Government. The Council has no choice but to meet these targets and make appropriate and necessary changes to bin collection schemes. It must modernise its waste management practices and find sustainable alternatives. If these EU targets are not achieved, the Council will face large fines that will have to be paid for by its ratepayers.
The suggestions that services have been diluted and the Scheme is a cost saving exercise are misguided. Every Council in Northern Ireland is faced with the same challenges and choices and is having to review how it manages its waste.
Will there be enough space in my black bin?
Provided householders make full use of their red 'Kerbie Box', Blue Bin and Brown Bin, they should be able to cope with a fortnightly collection of the black refuse bin. Householders should also make full use of the Waveney Road Civic Amenity Site, Waveney Road, for recycling of waste that may not be collected by the kerbside service e.g. electrical items, household batteries etc. Bring sites throughout the Borough can also be used to recycle glass, cans, paper, textiles etc.
Why is it important to Recycle?
We all create waste. We need to start taking responsibility for that waste and for reducing it, reusing what we can and recycling as much of it as possible. If the Council is to meet its waste diversion targets, everyone must play their part. The Council cannot do this on its own. It needs its ratepayers’ full support and commitment
The more households that participate and recycle their waste, the greater the Council's chances are of meeting the targets and avoiding fines. Ballymena Borough Council has already raised its recycling rate every year over the past 5 years but we still have a long way to go. Lets not forget that the environment benefits if we recycle. The more we recycle the less waste goes to landfill. Recycling uses much less energy and raw materials than making new products.
It is therefore in all our interests that we participate fully and embrace new waste management practices.
What can I do if I have excess refuse waste?
Householders are encouraged to try to reduce the amount of waste brought into the home in the first place. By being more aware of packaging whilst shopping and not buying more than we need, we can keep large bulky, often non-recyclable waste, out of our homes, and therefore out of our bins. After all, the only reason we have waste in the first place is because we buy it.
Are bags allowed in Brown bins?
No. Plastic bags are seen as contaminants and should not be used in recycling bins. They cause problems at both the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) and Composting Facility and can result in complete lorry loads being rejected and being sent to landfill. Please use biodegradable caddy liners provided by Council.
Contamination can be described as a pollutant. In the recycling bins therefore, a contaminant is something that should not be there. It is important that contamination levels are kept to an absolute minimum. Only specified items should be included in your 'Kerbie' Boxes and Brown Bins.
BLACK BINS/ BROWN BINS
If you are unsure of what should go into your Black/ Brown bins, please contact 028 2564 8096. In cases where contamination is identified, the recycling bin will not be emptied. It is the responsibility of the householder to remove the contamination from the bin before it can be emptied.Once the contaminant has been removed please contact (028) 028 2564 8096 for advise on next available date for collection.
For information on the red and black kerbie box contact Bryson Recycling on 02890 848494. Please note free of charge kerbie boxes can be collected from Operational Services Department. For additional, replacement or first time boxes please contact 028 2564 8096.
Is Ballymena the only Council operating an Alternate Weekly Collection?
No. Most other Councils in Northern Ireland and many in England are also operating kerbside collection services on an alternate week basis. Ballymena Borough Council is one of the last Northern Irish councils to take the step to Alternate Weekly Collections and we are confident that it will increase our recycling rate and help avoid heavy fines from the EU.
Why Alternate Weekly Collection?
Although the frequency of collection of the Black Bin has been reduced, this has been supplemented with a more frequent collection of the Kerbie Box. If the brown bin as well as the kerbie boxes are fully utilised, this should allow you to divert around 50% of the waste in your Black Bin, making a fortnightly collection possible. You should also make full use of the Council’s Civic Amenity Site at Waveney Road and bring sites throughout the Borough to recycle those wastes that are not currently collected by the Alternate Weekly Collection.
Is this a reduction in the service I receive for my rates?
Services have not been withdrawn or diluted but modernised in response to new challenges. Whilst the Council is required to provide a waste collection service, the Council has discretion as to the level and type of service it provides.
Is a fortnightly collection safe?
Following consultation with the Council’s Environmental Health Service, and from a waste management perspective, provided the waste is contained within the bin and the lid kept shut, there is unlikely to be any health related implications for the householder. The bin is a sealed unit and has been specifically designed to safely contain various waste types, preventing any likely discharge whilst minimising odours. Odour, however, will be directly linked to what is contained within the bin.
Householders can take steps to minimise the likelihood of odours, such as keeping the waste tightly secured in plastic bags before being placed into the bin. Bins could also be washed out on a regular basis to ensure that all loose debris is removed from the bin. This will again minimise odour. Ultimately, the condition of any bin will be dependent upon the way in which it is managed. Householders should also make full use of the Civic Amenity Site at Waveney Road and bring banks to recycle any extra recyclables they might have.
What about the increase in rats, flies and odour?
Studies have shown that the rat population is increasing but there is no evidence to link this with AWCs. Milder winters, increased levels of food waste on commercial premises and streets, as well as defective sewers and drains have all contributed to the increase in the rat population. Wheeled bins are rat-proof so long as they are kept uptight and the lids are closed. Waste in bags left outside the bin may attract dogs, cats, and foxes, scavenging birds as well as rats.
Flies and maggots are found throughout the environment, particularly during the warmer months. Some flies, especially houseflies and blowflies are attracted to household waste and are often found indoors. Flies will feed on and lay their eggs on exposed food. You can prevent flies from accessing household waste by keeping the lid firmly shut on kitchen bins and on the wheelie bin.
Most waste, particularly food waste such as meat and fish, will produce unpleasant odours as it decays. This may be more noticeable over summer months when bacteria can grow more quickly at higher temperatures. To reduce the problems with odour emissions form decaying waste, wrap rubbish well before binning it. Where possible bins should be stored in a shaded area away from direct sunlight.
Can I get an extra kerbie box?
Free of charge replacement boxes, lids and additional boxes to households can be collected from the Operational Services Department offices.
Why will the Council not lift my excess waste?
Ballymena Borough Council operates a no extra side waste policy. The Council must make considerable reductions in the amount of waste being sent to landfill. The collection of extra bags only serves to undermine our endeavours to achieve this goal and meet the waste diversion targets. The Council must encourage householders to not only Reuse and Recycle their waste but also Reduce the amount of waste they generate in the first place. Collecting additional refuse sacks is counter-productive to this aim.
What can I put in my brown bin?
Garden and Food waste as well as cold ashes can be disposed of in the brown bin.
Should I bag the items in my brown bin?
No. All items should be placed loose in the brown bin. Bin Liners of any kind must not be used. For food waste please use biodegradable liners council supply.
What if I do put the wrong things in my recycle bins?
One bin can contaminate an entire lorry load. In this case the load would have to be rejected for recycling. To minimise the likelihood of this happening, Refuse Crew members will carry out visual inspections of bins to ensure they do not contain the wrong materials. Bins identified as contaminated will not be emptied and a contamination sticker will be placed over the bin lid. Contaminants must be removed. Only then can the householder call 028 2564 8096 for advice on next available date for collection.
I am physically unable to wheel my bin to the footpath, what can I do?
If you are unable to wheel your bin to the footpath, the Council can do it on your behalf, providing you submit a note from your doctor. Please contact 028 2564 8096 to arrange an assisted lift. Anyone who applies for an assisted lift for their Black Bin can also get the same service for their Brown Bin and Kerbie Boxes on request from appropriate parties.
Can I purchase an additional black bin?
No. Ballymena Borough Council operates a 1 black refuse bin per household Policy. Households with 6 or more residing or a family member with a medical condition may be entitled to a larger bin on request provided all recycling facilities are being utilised. In order to acquire the additional capacity the household will have to complete an application form stating occupant number and ages.
Residents with a medical condition generating additional quantities of waste must also complete an application form accompanied with a doctor’s letter. Please contact Operational Services for further information on 028 2564 8096
Why can I not recycle ALL my plastic containers?
At present plastic waste recycling in the UK is mainly based on single polymer waste streams, e.g. PET and HDPE, due to the lack and unreliability of end markets for mixed plastic waste. PET and HDPE are what your plastic bottles are made out of and what reprocessors are willing to accept. The Council cannot therefore accept other types of plastic wastes at this time.
New markets for materials are becoming available all the time and as soon as we are able to accept new materials for recycling, either in the recycling bins and box, Pennybridge Temporary Civic Amenity Site or bring sites we will alert all residents.
WAVENEY ROAD HOUSEHOLD RECYCLING CENTRE:
October to April
Monday to Friday 7:45am to 4:15pm Saturday 7.45 am to 4:00pm Sunday Closed
WAVENEY ROAD HOUSEHOLD RECYCLING CENTRE:
April to September
April Monday to Thursday 7.45 am to 6.30 pm. May Monday to Thursday 7.45 am to 7.00 pm. June Monday to Thursday 7.45 am to 8.00 pm. July Monday to Thursday 7.45 am to 8.00 pm. August Monday to Thursday 7.45 am to 7.00 pm. September Monday to Thursday 7.45 am to 6.30 pm. Friday 7.45 am - 4.15pm. Saturday 7.45 am -4.00 pm. Sunday Closed
For other holiday details and collection arrangements not covered in the above list please refer to the local press or alternatively contact telephone number 028 2564 8096 for the information required.