Waste Management
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What can I recycle in Cook Shire?

You can recycle a wide range of materials, including:

  • Cooking oil
  • Waste engine oil
  • Paper and cardboard
  • Green waste
  • Scrap metal
  • Tyres
  • Lead acid batteries
  • Dry cell batteries
  • Unprocessed timber
  • E-waste such as televisions, computers and accessories
  • Gas bottles
  • Mobile phones
  • Printer cartridges
  • Fluorescent tubes and bulbs
  • Mixed aluminium, plastic, steel and glass packaging (not bagged)

What type of plastics can I recycle?

You can recycle plastic types 1 and 2 - these include most plastic food and drink containers, personal care and home care bottles (bleach, shampoo etc). Soft plastics such as cling wrap, plastic bags and biscuit trays can not be recycled.

Please ensure all containers are rinsed, and free from all food or drink residue. These can be taken to your waste transfer station, or deposited in your nearest recycling skip.

What type of metals can I recycle?

You can recycle most metal food containers, including aluminium and steel food cans, aluminium drink cans, chocolate and biscuit tins. Please ensure all containers are rinsed, and free from all food or drink residue. These can be taken to your waste transfer station, or deposited in your nearest recycling skip.

Where can I recycle?

Recycling skip bins are a free, user-friendly, and convenient way to dispose of your sored mixed recyclables (plastic containers, metal containers, cardboard and paper) at any time. All recyclables are also free to dispose at all Cook Shire waste transfer stations and landfills during regular opening hours, provided they are sorted into separate waste streams.

Recycling skip bins are available at the following locations:

3 May Street (PCYC Cooktown Events Centre), Cooktown
Walker Street (behind Council Office), Cooktown
Rossville / Bloomfield Road (Hatfield Marketplace), Rossville
West Street, Ayton (next to Ayton Library)

It is illegal to dump rubbish in Cook Shire and while the recycling bins and trailers are emptied regularly, if you do find them full, please don't leave your recyclables on the ground as the wind and animals can scatter it around and cause litter problems.

 Dry cell batteries may be dropped off at the following locations:

  • Cooktown IGA
  • Cooktown Library
  • Cook Shire Council Main Administration Building
  • Lakeland Roadhouse

How should I sort my recycling?

Sorted recyclables (plastics and metals, not including scrap metal, and cardboard and paper) can be dropped off at any recycling skip bin. When recycling at the transfer station, all recyclables must be sorted into separate streams, such as green waste, scrap metal, plastics, cardboard etc.

Below is an example of a ute-load of sorted recyclables, which could be disposed of free at your transfer station. Non-sorted recyclables will charged as general waste.

Where does my recycling go?

Cardboard and plastic containers are normally baled by waste management staff using a vertical auto baler. The plastic containers are sorted into HDPE and mixed plastic before baling because HDPE attracts a higher market price.

Containers that are refundable under the Queensland Container Refund Scheme are recovered from the collected recyclables and transferred to the local container exchange depot.

We currently do not have an outlet for non-refundable glass containers. Therefore, , we are compelled to send them to landfill until we source a viable alternative.

Other recyclables go to different areas in Cairns or Brisbane to be recycled into different products, such as:

  • Cooking oil - recycled into biodiesel
  • Waste engine oil - recycled into purified oil, used again as diesel or alternative fuel
  • Green waste - mulched
  • Scrap metal - reprocessed back into steel
  • Whitegoods - gas is recovered and recycled, remainder used for scrap metal
  • Tyres - tyre rubber is recycled for use in roads, playground mats, glues and even explosives
  • Lead acid batteries - both lead and acid are extracted and used again
  • Unprocessed timber - mulched
  • Gas bottles - valves removed for ventilation, then used as scrap metal
  • Mobile phones, e-waste, printer cartridges and fluro tubes - taken apart and sorted into metals, plastics, glass etc and recycled

How much does it cost to recycle?

It does not cost anything to dispose of sorted recyclables such as glass, metal and plastic containers (Type 1 and 2) at either our unmanned recycling skip bins, or your local transfer station. Green waste and scrap metal are also free to recycle at waste transfer stations only.

ABN: 45 425 085 688

10 Furneaux Street Cooktown, Qld 4895

Mail: PO Box 3 Cooktown, Qld 4895

Email: mail@cook.qld.gov.au

Phone: (07) 4082 0500

Fax: (07) 4082 0588

Hours: 8.45am-4.45pm Monday to Friday