Recycling and Green Waste Recycling

EPA Victoria today confirmed that SKM has achieved compliance with the outdoor stockpiles requirements for its Coolaroo site, and can now start accepting recyclable material.

From Thursday 21 March all recyclable materials collected in Darebin will be sent to recycling.

While we are relieved that this situation has been resolved, we will continue our advocacy for long-term solutions for the recycling industry.

We thank the community for your patience during what has been a frustrating time and we appreciate your support in passing this information to neighbours, relatives and friends who also live in Darebin.

Know what can and can't go in your recycling bin and take the Pledge to Recycle Right.

Darebin City Council invites all residents to make the commitment to recycling by taking the Pledge to Recycle Right at home. 

Recycling Right means always putting the right items in the recycling bin, keeping the wrong items out (plastic bags, soft plastic, drinking glasses, polystyrene), and making sure all recycling goes in the bin loosely (no bags!). 

By Recycling Right you’re helping save valuable resources from going to landfill, save energy and protecting our environment. You can read more about the benefits of recycling in our Recycling FAQs.

Be part of Recycle Right by taking the following actions:

1. Take the Pledge and test your knowledge with our Recycle Right quiz.

Click here to take the pledge!

The Recycle Right Pledge competition has now closed and prize winners will be notified by 20 December 2018. Congratulations to all who pledged to Recycle Right and tested their knowledge with the quiz. 

2. Be an expert! Know what you can and can’t recycle. Use our A to Z Waste and Recycling Guide and Recycling Quick Guide poster to learn more about what you can and can’t recycle. Hard copies are available at our Customer Service Centres, or can be mailed on request by calling 8470 8888. Large print is available.

3. Keep up to date with our top recycling tips by liking Council’s Instagram, Facebook or Twitter

4. Watch the video of Cr Le Cerf and local recycling hero Leo discuss the dos and don'ts of recycling.

Still have more questions on recycling? Check our Recycling FAQs, call Customer Service on 8470 8888 or email

How to Recycle Right

Hard plastic
Items such as milk bottles, soft drink bottles, ice cream and yogurt tubs, takeaway containers, laundry and bathroom bottles, buckets, plant pots, and other items made from hard plastic. To check if plastic is hard, try the scrunch test. If you can scrunch plastic in your hand and it bounces back, it's hard. If you scrunch it and it loses shape, like a plastic bag, it's soft plastic and can't be recycled. Remember, containers should be empty but don't need to be squeaky clean.

Handy Tip: Don't be tricked by the triangle and number stamp on plastic products. These codes (1 -7) are part of the Resin Identification Code, and identify the type of resin the plastic product is made from, not whether it can be recycled. People often confuse the 'resin identification code' for the general recycling symbol (mobius loop), which looks like three chasing arrows. 

Paper and cardboard
Such as office paper, envelopes, pizza boxes, egg cartons, newspaper and magazines.

Cardboard milk and juice cartons.
This material is also called liquid paper board.

Glass bottles and jars
Such as sauce and jam jars and soft drink bottles. However, drinking glasses or other household glass (such as a vase), Pyrex, mirrors, ceramics and crockery must go in the general waste bin.

Aluminium and steel
Items such as cans, tins, aerosol cans, foil trays and aluminium foil (rolled as large as a golf ball). These should be empty, but don't need to be squeaky clean.

Clean pots, pans and other metal cooking dishes
Even with plastic handles (no pot or pan lids). However, the glass lids must go in the general waste bin.

Download the A to Z Waste and Recycling Guide and Recycle Right Quick Guide for a full list of items that are accepted in your household recycling bin.

  • No plastic bags or any soft plastic that can be scrunched into a ball in your hand and lose their shape - no plastic wrap, no bread bags, no pasta packets, no muesli bar wrappers or chip bags. Find out where to recycle soft plastics here.
  • No polystyrene (Styrofoam)
  • No disposable cups (coffee cups) - the hard plastic lid can go in the recycling bin
  • No food scraps or green waste
  • No fabric
  • No light globes -  these can be recycled at a Darebin Customer Service Centre Recycling Station
  • No batteries- these can be recycled at a Darebin Customer Service Centre Recycling Station 
  • No electrical goods
  • No ceramics, crockery or Pyrex
  • No drinking glass or wine glasses
  • No mirror
  • No nappies
  • No smoke detectors - up to 10 household smoke detectors can be disposed of in your household waste bin. For more than 10 smoke detectors, seek advice from the Department of Health
  • No general waste

If you are unsure whether an item can be recycled or not, call us on 8470 8888 or email for advice.

  • Don't bag your recycling, keep it loose! Bagged recycling may not get sorted at the recycling facility. Make sure to place all your recycling in the bin loosely 
  • Recycling doesn't need to be squeaky clean. Containers and bottles only need to be scraped free of food and liquid, no need to rinse them clean
  • Squeeze, squash and flatten your recycling to fit more in your bin
  • Don't put the wrong items in the recycling bin. Only put items that can be recycled in your recycling bin - it may not be collected if there are incorrect items inside

Get it Right on Bin Night
Get It Right On Bin Night is a state-wide project that helps you make some simple changes at home to ensure you’re recycling right. 

  • Check for recycling in every room of your house, including the bathroom, loungeroom, laundry and study
  • Make sure recyclable items are empty
  • Don’t put recycling in plastic bags


Recycling Soft Plastic
You can recycle soft plastics (any plastic items that can be scrunched into a ball in your hand) by dropping them off at a REDcycle collection point at participating supermarkets . The soft plastics collected by REDcycle are recycled into new products for schools and communities. Visit the REDcycle website for a full list of what can be collected and to search for your nearest drop-off point.

Many other supermarkets also have recycling bins for single-use plastic shopping bags. Visit the Recycling Near You website to find your nearest drop-off point.

Darebin's Community Recycling Stations
Our community recycling stations are located at each Customer Service Centre and Bundoora Park Visitor's Centre. They accept household quantities of:

  • Household batteries (please tape all 9V and 6V batteries at the terminals, small cell batteries should be wrapped in tape before being placed inside the station)
  • Light globes and compact fluorescent tubes (CFLs)
  • X-rays
  • Cameras and accessories (remember to wipe your data)
  • Mobile phones and accessories (remember to wipe your data)
  • DVDs, CDs and video tapes

We are no longer accepting corks and ring pulls in the community recycling stations. Ring pulls can be left on aluminium cans and placed in your recycling bin. There is currently no recycling option for cork in Australia. However they can be reused for craft purposes, as garden mulch or can be placed in a compost bin (not your green waste bin).

 If you have large quantities of the above items, please visit the Darebin Resource Recovery Centre. Fees may apply.

If you have commercial quantities of the above items, please visit Planet Ark's Business Recycling website for options.

Darebin Resource Recovery Centre
The Darebin Resource Recovery Centre accepts many household items for free recycling.

Recycling Near You
Detailed options for recycling can be found at Recycling Near You or by calling the Recycling Hotline on 1300 733 712 (Mon - Fri, 9am - 5pm EST).

Even more recycling options
These organisations may be able to help you recycle your unwanted goods:

  • Ziilch: Simple online recycling of unwanted goods
  • The Sharehood: Helps you share resources within your neighbourhood
  • Freecycle: A non-profit portal for exchanging unwanted goods for free
  • Ozrecycle: Another way to give and get things for free instead of sending them to landfill

Further Information
Customer Service
Phone: 8470 8888

Household recycling bins are collected fortnightly, alternating with green waste bin collections (green lids).

Find out if you live in the East or West collection zone by checking the map below, or downloading the Which Recycling Zone Do I Live In? map. You can also find your collection zone and next collection date by searching your address in the Recycling Map website.

Darebin - East/West map

Recycling Calendar
Download the 2019 Recycling Calendar for all the information you need to keep track of your recycling and green waste collection dates:

Printed calendars are also available from our Customer Service Centres, or you can call 8470 8888 to have one posted to you.

Christmas and Public Holiday Collections
Bins are not collected on Christmas Day, New Year's Day, Good Friday, or Anzac Day public holidays. Bins will be collected the following day.

On bin night, make sure you:

  • Put your bin out before 5am on your collection day
  • Put your bin on the nature strip at least half a metre from other bins, cars or obstructions (where possible)
  • Ensure that your bin lid is closed, with no rubbish beside or on top of it
  • Face your bin opening towards the road
  • Remove your bin from the nature strip within 24 hours of collection

Up to two yellow lidded recycling bins are available to Darebin businesses for a start-up charge of $98.40 per bin (GST exempt).

What is Included in the Business Recycling Service?
Businesses operating from a business rated property can obtain up to two 240 litre yellow lidded recycling bins, collected fortnightly as part of our Business Recycling Service.

There is a one off fee of $98.40 (GST exempt) per bin. Maximum of two bins allowed per business.

Businesses operating from a residential rated property are not eligible for the Business Recycling Service.

How Do I Order a Business Recycle Bin?

  1. Complete the Business Recycling Application Online Form or complete the form in-person at our Customer Service Centres (along with your payment).
  2. Make the payment via a credit card.

* Fees and charges may change. Participating businesses will be kept informed of any changes.

If you are a not-for-profit organisation, you may be eligible for a fee reduction or waiver at Council’s discretion.

To apply:

  1. Complete the not-for-profit organisation Fee Waiver Application Form
  2. Return the form to any Customer Service Centre or by email to:

For information about what you can put in your business recycling bin and your collection days, please refer to the Recycling section of the Recycling and Green Waste page.

Darebin offers an optional green waste recycling service to households to encourage the recycling of garden waste.

From Spring 2019 Darebin households with a green waste bin will be able to put all types of food waste into their green bin alongside their garden waste. Darebin residents will be notified when food waste recycling commences and will be provided more information of what can go into the bin.

Garden waste placed in this bin is recycled into garden products such as mulch and compost. You can find out what happens to your green waste by visiting the Back to Earth initiative here.

Green waste sent to landfill generates methane, a greenhouse gas that is 25 time more potent that carbon dioxide. By recycling green waste you prevent it going to landfill.

Green Waste Recycling Collection Days 
Green waste recycling bins are collected fortnightly, alternating with your recycling collection. Find out when your green waste recycling bin is collected via the maps below:

You can also find your collection date by searching on your property address in the Darebin Guide.

Christmas and Public Holiday Collections
Bins will not be collected on Good Friday, Christmas Day, New Year's Day or Anzac Day. If your green waste recycling bin is due to be collected on one of these days it will be collected the following day. All other bin collections in the week of one of these public holidays will also occur a day late.

What can I put in my Green Waste Recycling Bin?
The following items are accepted in green waste recycling bins:

  • Grass clippings
  • Weeds
  • Small sticks, twigs and prunings (up to 30cm length)
  • Flowers and leaves
  • Cut flowers

Please do not place food waste, pet droppings, soil, concrete or bricks in your green waste recycling bin or it may not be emptied. 

Your bin will not be collected if:

  • It weighs more than 30kg
  • It is overfilled or has anything on top of it or leaning against it
  • It is put out too late
  • It is too close to obstacles such as trees, poles, other bins or parked cars

Branch and Christmas Tree Collections
Darebin households are entitled to:

  • One free bundled branch collection per year (up to eight bundles of branches of no more than one metre long). Branches must be tied with string and must be easily handled by one person.
  • One natural or real Christmas tree collection per year (one natural Christmas tree per household). Christmas tree collections are available from 27 December to 1 February.
  • The Darebin Resource Recovery Centre (the Tip) offers a free drop-off service of standard sized Christmas trees for two weeks only from mid to late January.

Bookings are required for both these services. To book, call Customer Service on 8470 8888.

Disposing of additional Green Waste Recycling
Additional green waste recycling can be disposed of at the Darebin Resource Recovery Centre (Tip). Charges apply. Or you can compost your green waste for free at home using a compost bin.

Food Waste
Food waste put in your general waste bins ends up in landfill. Not only does wasting food cost you money, it is bad for the environment too. When food breaks down in landfill, it generates methane - a greenhouse gas. By reducing the amount of food waste in landfill, we reduce the amount of greenhouse gas entering the environment. 

From Spring 2019 Darebin households with a green waste bin will be able to include all types of food waste into their green bin alongside their garden waste. More information will be available in the coming months.

For information on how to reduce your food waste, see our Food Waste Storage Sheet or visit the Love Food Hate Waste website.

Green waste recycling bins are an optional service for residents.

Charges for this optional service are billed to the ratepayer through rates notices. Only the ratepayer for the property can request an optional green waste recycling service. Discounts are available to pension card holders.

If you are a tenant in a rental property and would like this service you will need to contact the property owner or agent and request that they order the green waste service on your behalf.

Bin Size
Annual charge
120L $54.10
120L (pensioner rate) $31.30
240L $102.50
240L (pensioner rate) $65.90

How to order a Green Waste Recycling Bin
1. Complete the Green Waste Recycling Bin Application Form
2. Return the completed form to a Customer Service Centre

Further Information
Customer Service
Phone 8470 8888

Further Information
Customer Service
Phone: 8470 8888 

Recent audits show that 35-40% of the average Darebin waste bin is food waste which may have been avoided or recycled.

This makes food waste very costly with the average household throwing away around $2,200 per year or approximately one in every five shopping bags of groceries that could otherwise have been avoided.

It’s also a serious environmental concern because when food breaks down in landfill, it produces methane which is a more toxic greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. By throwing away food we waste all the energy, water and natural resources used to produce, transport and package the food.

According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) if the amount of food wasted globally in 2007 was listed as a country it would have been the third largest greenhouse gas emitter, behind only China and the USA.

So what can you do?

Firstly, try to avoid food waste wherever possible. Two key strategies to do this is meal planning and writing a shopping list as these help you to buy only what you need. Making sure you store your food correctly will also help you to make the most of the food you buy. Check out our Food Storage Chart here.
The following are two local programs that provide valuable ideas and resources to help you and your household avoid food waste.

Love your leftovers

Love Food Hate Waste is a Victorian Government campaign that aims to raise awareness about the importance of food waste. Their I Love Leftovers campaign promotes a range of helpful and practical tools and ideas to make food waste avoidance easy. Check out the Love Food Hate Waste website for recipe cards and videos with ideas on using up leftover food and meals along with tips and tools for better meal planning, shopping and storage.

Know more about your food

The Food Know How program is an initiative created by Yarra City Council that was delivered across a number of local councils, including Darebin. The aim of the program is to help people reduce food waste by educating and engaging households to avoid and recycling their food waste. It provided information and a range of workshops on topics like meal planning, smart shopping, storing food, cooking with leftovers and how to recycle your food waste for your garden. The program was made possible with funding from the Metropolitan Local Government Waste and Resource Recovery Fund.

To access all the tools and resources from the program including the weekly menu plan and shopping list and a household food waste diary go to Food Know How.


Changes to the global recycling industry mean it is now more important than ever to be mindful of our waste habits and that the right items are going in the correct bin.

What is happening with recycling?
China has announced that it is no longer accepting some recyclable items. China is doing this to ensure that it receives a cleaner, higher-quality product, which means it is uncontaminated by incorrect items. This is impacting on the global recycling industry, including Australia and Victoria.

At this point in time, Council’s recycling collections remain unaffected. Please keep using your recycling bin correctly – separating your recyclables from other waste and try to avoid creating waste where you can.

It is now more important than ever before that we are recycling right and minimising our waste.

While everything remains the same for Council at the moment, the impact of China’s decision to stop importing low-quality recyclable materials being felt worldwide.  Recycling processors globally will now be flooded with requests from countries around the world, wanting to find another destination for recyclable materials.  It is now vital that our recycling is separated properly from household waste, in order to be the best possible quality so it is attractive to alternative recycling processors.

Council will continue to keep you informed of any changes to Council’s recycling collections.

What is being done by Council and others?
Council is and will continue working with our recycling processor, peak bodies and government to ensure Council’s recycling continues as normal. In July 2018 the Victorian government launched a $37 million dollar plan to improve recycling infrastructure, expand markets for recycled materials and provide a public education program to help Victorians recycle effectively. 

What can I do to help?
Darebin residents and businesses are good recyclers, but there is still room for us to do better.
Residents and businesses do to the following to help:
• Prevent waste – Buy only what you need and avoid excess packaging
• Continue to recycle as normal –  Recycle Right - carefully separate your recyclables from your waste and place them in the right bin
• Learn more about what you can and can’t recycle – see our handy guide A to Z Waste and Recycling Guide and Quick Guide and remember – keep your recycling loose – no plastic bags in recycling bins 
• Buy Australian products with recyclable content – support more local recycling industries

This page will be updated with any changes to Darebin’s recycling service. For more information on recycling please call Council on 8470 8888.

For more information on what the state government is doing regarding recycling, please see Sustainability Victoria’s website.

Not sure of how to get rid of your once festive Christmas tree? We provide a collection service and a drop-off point up until 1 February.

Christmas tree collections are limited and begin on 29 December and end by 1 February. Bookings are limited and required. You can book your free Christmas tree collection by calling Customer Service on 8470 8888.

You can also drop-off your Christmas tree during the same period at the Darebin Resource Recovery Centre (the Tip). Real trees can be dropped off for free, but a plastic tree will cost $18 (default charge).

Further Information
Customer Service
Ph: 8470 8888