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Guernsey States to stop recycling polystyrene to save £45,000 per year

Longue Hougue recycling plant will no longer recycle polystyrene. Credit: ITV Channel TV

The States of Guernsey has stopped recycling polystyrene packaging to save the island £45,000 a year.

It can cost £3,000 per tonne to recycle, as the lightweight packaging needed to be compressed on-island to reduce transport costs. Previously it had been sent off-island to make sure it did not end up in landfill in Guernsey.

Now general waste is being sent off-island, polystyrene will be included and exported.

Islanders can drop off the white packaging material at the new Household Waste and Recycling Centre at Longue Hougue or at Waitrose in Rohais.

Guernsey Waste says it will consider starting to recycle the material again if a more economic route can be found.

The compacting process was time-consuming and costly, but justified when the priority was to extend the life of Mont Cuet. Now we are no longer relying on landfill, and are able to recover energy from polystyrene, instead of just disposing of it. We can therefore no longer justify the high cost.

– Sarah Robinson, Guernsey Waste operations manager