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Environment FAQs


Environment, Recycling

Question: Can I place steel food tins in the can bank of my local bottle bank?

Answer:

No, food tins can not be placed in your local bottle bank. They can be brought to Derrinumera and Rathroeen Civic Amenity Centres where they can be deposited for recycling. They can also be placed in your kerbside recycling collection bin where a service is available.

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Environment, Composting

Question: Where is the best place to locate my compost bin in the garden?

Answer:

You should locate your compost bin in a sunny spot in the garden and somewhere that is easily accessible from your home including in wet weather! Compost bins should also be placed on a level surface where there is good drainage.

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Environment, Composting

Question: Where can I get a compost bin?

Answer:

Household compost bins are available from all area offices, landfill sites and from Aras an Chontae in Castlebar. Click here to view price for Composter Bin. This includes a compost bin for your garden, a kitchen caddy and an information booklet. Compost bins are an easy and clean way of reducing kitchen and garden waste.

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Environment, Composting

Question: My compost bin smells - what am I doing wrong?

Answer:

Smell is an indication that there is not enough air getting into your compost bin. Stir the contents using a garden fork or by prodding with a stick. Make sure you are putting in a good mix of green and brown materials. Greens are normally wet and browns are drier materials. If you have too much grass clippings or other wet materials and not enough browns the air flow is blocked and the composting bacteria can not work. Add in more dry materials such as shredded paper to restore the balance.

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Environment, Burial Grounds

Question: I am afraid of rats and mice getting into my compost bin - what can I do?

Answer:

Compost bins are vermin proof, ensure that all the parts are clicked in tight and that the lid and door are kept closed.  Avoid placing cooked food in the compost bin. If you have seen vermin in your garden, it is better to place the compost bin in a central location away from walls and hedges. Plant lavender around the base of the bin to deter rats and mice.

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Environment (Awareness)

Last updated: 04/11/2015


Environment, Composting

Question: Can I put ashes in my compost bin?

Answer:

You can compost wood and peat ashes but not coal ashes.

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Environment (Awareness)

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Environment, Composting

Question: Is there anything I can do to speed the decomposition process?

Answer:

By regularly turning your compost to add oxygen, shredding the materials going into the compost system and adding nitrogen rich products such as nettles or human urine all can help to speed up the decomposition process.   ( compliments of www.stopfoodwaste.ie)

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Environment, Composting

Question: There are hundreds of flies in my compost system?

Answer:

During the summer wormeries and compost bins can be affected by fruit flies.  They are harmless and are attracted to the vegetative food scraps that you are adding to the system.  To minimise the number of fruit flies simply leave the lid off the compost bin on a sunny day for 2-3 hours. Then cover the contents of the compost system with wet sheets of newspaper and replace the lid.  The idea behind this is that you are limiting the contact the flies can have with the vegetative food scraps. (compliments of www.stopfoodwaste.ie)

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Environment, Composting

Question: My eggshells aren’t breaking down in the compost system, why?

Answer:

If you compare an eggshell to a banana skin or carrot peeling, it is much harder.  They are suitable for composting but they will take a long time to break down.  Crushing your eggshells will make them less noticeable in the compost you harvest.  Alternatively putting your eggshells in the oven for 20 minutes will turn them into a fine powder.  (compliments of www.stopfoodwaste.ie)

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Environment, Composting

Question: Turning my compost is difficult is there anything I can do to make it easier?

Answer:

Regularly turning your compost is important.  Home-made compost systems are generally easy enough to turn however compost bins are difficult to turn due to the narrow opening at the top of the bin.  If you are about to start composting or have just harvested some compost place a drainpipe drilled with holes into the centre of the empty system.   When you are adding material add the material around the outside of the drainpipe (never put material to be composted into the drainpipe as this will block the hole).  The holes in the drainpipe will allow a continuous supply of oxygen to the bottom of the compost bin.  Alternatively stabbing the material with a fork will introduce some oxygen or you can purchase a spiral compost mixer that can be described as a giant corkscrew. (compliments of www.stopfoodwaste.ie)

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Environment, Composting

Question: What can I do to reduce the weed seeds in my finished compost?

Answer:

There will always be a small number of weeds seeds within the finished compost.  When you are using a turning system you will have fewer as high temperatures generated will kill the weeds seeds, however when cool composting (using a compost bin) the heat generated is not hot enough to kill the weeds seeds.  You can leave the weeds out to dry in the sun and this will kill the seeds, you can cut the flowering head off the weeds as this is where the seeds are or you can drown you weeds seeds. To drown the weeds simply submerge your weeds in water and cover to eliminate light and leave for 2-3 weeks.  At the end of this time you should have your dead weeds that can go into your compost system and an offensive smelling liquid.  This liquid is full of nutrients so use it to feed your growing flowers and vegetables. (compliments of www.stopfoodwaste.ie)

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Environment, Composting

Question: Is there something wrong all my slugs and earthworms are around the lid of the compost unit?

Answer:

Slugs and earthworms make their way to the lid of the compost bin.  Don’t worry this is a good sign and they will make their own way back into the material to be composted. (compliments of www.stopfoodwaste.ie)

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Environment, Composting

Question: How will I know when my compost is ready to harvest?

Answer:

You will know when your compost is ready to harvest as it will look like a dark brown, crumbly soil and you should not be able to recognise any vegetative food scraps or garden materials.

 (compliments of www.stopfoodwaste.ie)

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Environment (Awareness)

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Environment, Recycling

Question: Where can I recycle blue glass?

Answer:

Blue glass can be recycled with green glass at bottle banks.

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Environment (Awareness)

Last updated: 30/03/2017


Environment, Recycling

Question: What do I need to my rubbish before I put it in the recycling bin – do I need to wash every thing?

Answer:

 

Yes, you should wash away any food or liquid residue from glass jars and bottles, plastic bottles, plastic containers and food cans. Often a quick rinse in enough, remember try not to use lots of water.

If it squashes – squash it! Materials such as plastic milk bottles, detergent bottles, shampoo bottles, tetra pak cartons and aluminium cans can all be squashed. This helps you get more into your recycle bin or your local bring centre.

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Environment, Recycling

Question: Can I recycle the tags that come with new clothes?

Answer:

Generally, if the tag is cardboard or paper it can be recycled but remove any bits of plastic first.

It is a good idea to put a recycling bin in or near your bedrooms as it will help you remember to recycle from the bedroom as well as the kitchen.

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Environment, Recycling

Question: I am confused with all the different types of plastic and what I can and can not put in my recycling bin?

Answer:

It can be very confusing as there are so many different types of plastic out there!

The best thing to do is to ask your waste contractor for a clear list of exactly what they take as it can vary from one contractor to the next. Something may be recyclable but not all contractors take every item of recyclable waste so it is better to check with your service provider.

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Environment (Awareness)

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Environment, Recycling

Question: Can I put tin foil and foil trays in my recycling bin?

Answer:

Generally the answer is no as they are often contaminated with food waste. The best thing to do is to ask your waste contractor for a clear list of exactly what they take as it can vary from one contractor to the next

We will accept clean foil trays in our aluminum can receptacle at our Civic Amenity Centres in Derrinumera and Rathroeen.

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Environment, Recycling

Question: What can I do with old candles – I have a whole bag of bits of left over candles?

Answer:

 

You could make new candles! Many Arts and Crafts Shops provide moulds and wicks so that you can melt down old candles and make lovely new ones – you can even buy dyes and fragrances to add to your new candles. An old butt of a good quality crayon will also act as a dye to colour your new candle.

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Environment (Awareness)

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Environment

Question: I have a lot of old tablets and medicines that have expired what can I do with them?

Answer:

In the first instance contact your local pharmacy who may offer a take back facility. Waste medicines and tablets are also accepted as hazardous waste at Mayo County Council’s Civic Amenity Centres which are attached to the landfills at Derrinumera (Castlebar-Newport Road) and Rathroeen (Killala Road, Ballina).

 

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Environment, Recycling

Question: What can I do with tins of old paint, some of them have still paint in them?

Answer:

We will accept waste paints from householders at our civic amenity centres at Rathroeen (Killala Road, Ballina) and Derrinumera (Castlebar-Newport Road). If the tins are empty they are accepted in landfill. Tins with paint in them are accepted in the Civic Amenity Centres attached to the landfills and are accepted under the recycling charge.

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Environment (Awareness)

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Environment

Question: Can you inform me as to where/how I can dispose of old trees/bushes etc from a private garden?

Answer:

The civic amenity centres at Rathroeen and Derrinumera will accept fresh trees/bushes and any green garden waste from householders. The green waste is then forwarded for composting. They will accept up to a small car trailer load of green waste and the fee covers any other recyclable items that you may wish to bring.

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Environment (Awareness)

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Environment, Recycling

Question: I have a lot of garden clippings when I cut my lawn what can I do with them?

Answer:

You have a few options. You could bring the grass to Mayo County Council’s Civic Amenity Centres where it will be forwarded for composting.

 You could compost the grass in your own garden by building a simple pallet system and mixing the grass with “dry” carbon rich materials such as brown leaves or shredded paper. This will prevent leachate from your compost heap and will speed up the composting process. See the composting section of www.stopfoodwaste.ie for instructions on how to build your own compost bin.

 You could also try “Grass cycling” which is a really simple way of dealing with grass waste.  Visit: http://www.mayococo.ie/en/Services/Environment/Composting/GrassWaste/

 

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Environment (Awareness)

Last updated: 25/07/2011


Environment, Recycling

Question: Can I recycle perfume bottles?

Answer:

Yes, clear glass and frosted perfume bottles can be placed in the clear glass receptacle at your local bottle bank.  The pump/spray will be removed in the recycling process.

 

 

 

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Environment (Awareness)

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Environment Section

Second Floor, Mayo County Council
Áras an Chontae
The Mall
Castlebar
Phone: (094) 9024444
Contact Form: Online Complaints / Queries
Email: Environment@mayococo.ie
Open: Opening Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
and 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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