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Frequently asked waste questions

Waste and Recycling
Bins and Collection Days
Frequently asked waste questions

We’ve put together some handy information and tips on how to sort and reduce your waste.

Bins and waste

Download the current Waste Guide (PDF 2MB) to learn how to sort your waste and when your bin collection days are.

Each rate paying household will receive two mixed waste passes and one unlimited recycling pass within their 2023/24 rates notice. To learn more, download the Transfer Station Pass FAQs (PDF 440KB).

The Bins and Collection Days page outlines what can be put in each of your household bins.

For a detailed recycling and disposal guide, please download our current Waste Guide (PDF 2MB).

We’ve put together a handy guide on the Bin and Collection Days page to help you with sorting your waste into the correct bins. The guide is available in 18 languages.

  • Please place your bins on the verge by 6am on your collection day.
  • Bins should be placed one metre from the kerb, with the wheels nearer to your house.
  • If both bins are out, ensure they are at least half a metre apart so collection trucks can lift and empty them easily.
  • Keep footpaths clear and ensure bins are not obstructed. For example, bins must not be left under a tree or put near parked vehicles, walls, or lamp posts. If your bins are obstructed, collection trucks can’t lift and empty them.
  • Once your bins are emptied, please return them to your property as soon as possible.
  • Store bins in a shaded area and clean your bins regularly.
  • Wrap all moist and perishable foods in newspaper before placing in your general waste bin.
  • Freeze smelly food and place in your general waste bin the night before collection.
  • Try not to compact waste in your bin as it can prevent the contents from being emptied. Place lawn clippings and small prunings at the top of your general waste bin.

In Canning, we have a two-bin system which includes a general waste bin and a recycling bin. Recycling bins have a yellow lid. General waste bins can have a green lid or a red lid.

To be consistent with the national bin colour standards, the City is progressively changing the green lids on the general waste bins to red lids. This change will not impact how you are sorting your waste.

For more information about what goes in each bin, visit the Bins and Collection Days page.

The City faces unique barriers to implementing a three-bin system, including existing contractual arrangements with current suppliers.

We are currently working with stakeholders to ensure we can offer residents affordable and sustainable waste services that meet community expectations. Please check the website regularly for updates about a three-bin system.

Residents wishing to recycle organic waste at home can:

If you wish to know more, please contact us and request to speak to one of our friendly Waste Services officers. 

It's still important to place your COVID-19 waste in the right bins.

  • Empty hand sanitiser bottles can be placed in your recycling bin; however, lids must be placed in your general waste bin.
  • Tissues, paper towel, napkins, plastic gloves, face masks, RAT tests and disinfectant wipes all go into your general waste bin.
  • Face masks can also be recycled at the City of Canning Civic and Administration Building, 1317 Albany Highway, Cannington.


Long life cartons also known as Tetra Paks (used to package long-life milk, alternative milks like soy and almond, juice, and various other liquids) are unfortunately not recyclable in WA.

They are made from paperboard with layers of plastic and aluminium, meaning they can't be processed by facilities here in Western Australia. Please place these items in the general waste bin along with the plastic lid.

Plastic bottle lids need to be removed from bottles and containers before recycling. Lids and their bottles / containers are often made from different types of materials.

Plastic lids smaller than a credit card are too small to be collected by the machinery at the Materials Recovery Facility where recyclables are sent. Small plastic lids should be placed in the general waste bin. You can also take them to some of the City’s Recycling Hubs – visit the webpage to find the locations.

Metal lids must be removed from containers or jars and placed in your recycling bin as they are picked up by a magnet at the Materials Recovery Facility and sent into the metal stream for recycling. 

Recyclables that are put in plastic bags won’t be recycled. For staff safety, bags are not opened or emptied at the sorting facility. Recyclables in plastic bags are pulled from the conveyor and sent to landfill.

Containers, especially those that contained food or liquid, should be rinsed prior to placing into the yellow lid bin. Recyclables are sorted at the Materials Recovery Facility into different types, before being baled and sent to a factory for further processing.

To reduce the potential of contamination occurring due to rotting contents in containers, please rinse your containers before placing them into the recycling bin. This also ensures a safer working environment for workers that encounter your recyclables.

Use your leftover dishwashing water to give your recyclables a quick rinse before placing them in the yellow lid bin.

Soft plastics are commonly used for packaging. They include:

  • crisp bags
  • lolly wrappers
  • bread bags
  • shopping bags
  • cling film
  • biscuit packaging
  • produce bags
  • bubble wrap
  • any plastic packaging that is soft enough to be scrunched in your hand.

Soft plastics are not recyclable through the kerbside recycling bin as they wrap and tangle around machinery at the Material Recovery Facility. This causes a full stop of the operations to clear it up.

Additionally, soft plastics contaminate paper and cardboard which reduces its value and recyclability.

Please place soft plastics in your general waste bin.

Waste reduction

To find out a bunch of useful tips to rethink and reduce your waste at home, visit the Switch Your Thinking website.

You can donate to your local charity shop or non-for-profit organisation. Please place only good condition items in the donation bins. A rule to follow is "would I give this to a friend?" – if yes, then it is good to donate.

It takes a lot of energy to manufacture fabrics, yet tonnes of textiles and clothing end up in landfill every year. Here are some tips for re-using clothing and textiles:

Shopping tips:

  • Before going to the shops, check what’s in your fridge and pantry so you’re not doubling up.
  • Download a shopping list app. There are many shopping list apps for your phone and tablet – find one that works for you or use the back of an envelope.
  • Resist bargains (2-for-1) or bulk buys if the food does not have a long shelf life or cannot be frozen.

Before throwing out food, see if there is a recipe you can make:

  • Love Food Hate Waste has recipes for the ingredients you already have and tips on how best to store your food to keep it longer.
  • Foodwise Recipe Finder provides a range of recipes by entering the ingredients you have in your fridge and cupboard.

There is a different between use-by and best-before:

  • Foods marked with a use-by date must be consumed before that date.
  • Best-before indicates the date from which the quality of the food starts to deteriorate, but it can still be consumed after this date within reason.

You can regrow store bought veggies and herbs:

Compost your food waste:

With many of our favourite restaurants offering increased takeaway services, this means more containers are being used. Instead of throwing the containers away, they could be used for:

If you want to recycle your hard plastic containers (and lids larger than a credit card), rinse them and place loosely into the recycling bin. Please separate any bottle and containers from their lids.

Used coffee cups, takeaway cups, wooden skewers, disposable cutlery, and polystyrene are not recyclable and go into the general waste bin.

Containers for Change

Containers for Change is Western Australia's container deposit scheme, where a 10-cent refund will be given for each eligible container returned. The goal is to reduce litter and encourage recycling.

Collect your eligible containers instead of tossing them in the waste, then drop them off at a refund point where you can either keep or donate your 10-cent refund. Not only is it great for the environment, but it’s also a great way to make some pocket money or support local charities and community groups.

There are numerous places within the City of Canning where you can return or donate your eligible containers. Visit the Containers for Change website for a full list.

Learn more on the Containers for Change website.

The City partnered with Containers for Change to trial Container Exchange Points on public bins.

When you're out and about, check for the 10-cent mark on your beverage container. If it's got it, drop it in one of the baskets attached to our public bins. Your container can then be collected by someone and returned to a local refund point, benefitting both the environment and the community.

Find the exchange points at:

  • Cannington Leisureplex (outside by the café)
  • Cecil Avenue, Cannington (opposite Carousel)
  • Wharf Street Basin, Cannington
  • Queens Park Reserve, Queens Park
  • Riverton Bridge Park, Shelley
  • Shelley foreshore, Shelley
  • Kent Street Weir Park, Wilson
  • Lo Quay River Café, Wilson

City of Canning Plans

The City has developed a Strategic Waste Management Plan (PDF 13MB), which highlights our strategic and proactive approach to waste management. The plan outlines the City of Canning’s approach in achieving the waste vision by setting out objectives that cover key focus areas, implementing indicators to aim and measure ourselves against and putting in place the actions needed to accomplish our aims.

Download the Strategic Waste Management Plan (PDF 13MB) to learn more.

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