Household packaging waste is packaging waste produced by households. These include in total, all types of packaging materials (paper – cardboard, glass, metals, plastics, wood and small quantities of other materials). However, the biggest quantities of those packages consist of the following materials:
(a) cartons and other papers
(b) glass bottles and jars
(c) plastic bottles, jars and membranes
(d) aluminium tins
(e) cans in metal packaging
Streams of sorted household packaging at source (household)
Taking into consideration the need to collect good quality materials in order to be able to recycle them to the greatest extent, we chose to apply a System with three packaging streams that must be sorted at the households and have them separately collected.
The three streams are the following:
1. PMD stream (Plastics, Metals and Drink Cartons): Plastic bottles, flasks and PET, PE and HDPE jars, metal packaging (aluminium and steel packaging) and paper based drink packaging o(tetrapak).
2. Paper stream: dry cardboard boxes and packaging paper containers together with newspapers, magazines, office paper and advertising leaflets.
3. Glass stream: Glass bottles and jars and other glass packaging of all colours.
The Collection of recyclables in the above three streams have recently been chosen in a wide research carried out by the EUWID magazine, as the most effective way to sort at source and collect packaging material. This shows that the choices made by the system are both effective and efficient.
Sorting of Household Packaging at Source (household) and Collection
These three categories of materials have to be sorted at the households from the rest solid waste and be kept in separate temporary storage units (house bins) since their collection is separate and with a different frequency.
The collection of Paper and PMD streams in urban areas is carried out through kerbside collection, as is the case with the other solid municipal waste today. On the contrary, the collection of glass is carried out via the bring system where the citizens have to transport the materials to pre-fixed points where special glass bins are installed.
The collection in tourist and rural areas is carried out via the bring system where the citizens have to transport the material of all categories to pre-fixed points where PMD, Paper and Glass bins are installed.
Collection of all streams is performed by collection subcontractors who are employed by the System through invitation to tender procedures. The minimum requirements with regard to subcontractors are: the relevant experience in similar projects and to abide by the respective legislation and especially the issue of their licensing with regard to the collection and transport of waste of this type.
The Green Dot Mark is a trademark which is now used all over the world and it is one of the most recognized Marks worldwide.
When the Mark is placed on packaging it means that with regard to the specific packaging the company that has placed it on the market has paid fees to a collective System that operates on the basis of European Directive 94/62 EC on the management of this Packaging. So, the Mark is not an indication of the recyclability of the packaging but basically a financial tool. Thus everyone should be very careful while sorting the materials for recycling.