Frequently asked questions for waste during the COVID-19 crisis


Question 1: Why are you changing collections?

Answer: We have a large workforce that are working hard to maintain regular collections. Some of our workforce have been re-deployed to other essential duties. Like the rest of the UK, some of our team will display symptoms/be infected with COVID-19 and need to follow Government guidelines to isolate. Some may fall into the vulnerable category, and will need to follow further guidance to isolate.

We need to balance the safety and wellbeing of our workforce, alongside our duty to continue to provide an essential kerbside collection service for you all.

To ensure we continue to have resilience and continue to provide the most essential services to you all, we've had to cancel some of our lesser priority collection services. However, we have now increased your kerbside service to a weekly service for all waste types - except for garden waste.

Question 2: Why has green garden waste collections been cancelled, when everyone is at home working in their garden?

Answer: Green garden waste collections have been cancelled until further notice, so priority can be given to remove all other waste types each week. We ask residents to store their garden waste in their garden until the crisis is over.

Question 3: So green garden waste cannot be put out with your general black bag waste?

Answer: No - if you put green garden waste out for collection with or in your general black bag waste it will not be collected.

Question 4: What about bulky items, electrical items and batteries? What am I meant to do with these?

Answer: The Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC's) have been closed following Government advice. All bulky items are to be kept at your home until this crisis is over. It is essential that no one puts electrical items or batteries out in their general waste. This will cause significant operational problems if you do and electrical items/batteries will not be collected.

Question 5: What do I do with my tissues?

Answer: If you know or suspect you have Covid-19, all tissues/disposable cleaning wipes need to be double bagged and placed away from other waste for 72 hours.

After 72 hours, the bags can then need to be placed within your black bin/red striped bags.

Any green recycling bags with tissues in will not be collected by crews. Tissues are not recyclable. Recycling is sorted with both mechanical and manual means. Bags contaminated with tissues put our workforce at greater risk of infection.

Question 6: As I'm home working I have excess waste - what can I do with it?

Answer: We have now moved to a weekly collection. Please continue to use your green recycling bags.

If you live in a bag area, please continue to use your food waste caddy for any left-over food waste

We appreciate that you may produce more waste at this time. However, we are urging everyone to avoid wasting food. If you have bulk bought food, use your freezer to keep things like meat/milk/bread fresh. Try and use up leftovers, or make another meal with the leftovers you have.

There will always be unavoidable food waste like peelings, egg shells- you could try and home compost these while you are home but please do not put any cooked food waste in your home composting bin or compost heap.

When you are at the shops, consider purchasing products that have less packaging.

If you currently have your children at home with you, you may be looking for craft projects and things to do. Lots of packaging you would normally put into your green bags could be used for these. 

Question 7: Where will you be providing updates?

Answer: Any updates and changes to services will be made in the following places:

-         Facebook

-         Twitter

-         Website

-         Cardiff Gov app

-         Press releases via Cardiff News Room

Updates or changes to services will be published daily.

Question 8: I can't get hold of recycling bags or food liners?

Answer: There are now only 4 core Hubs open across this City, and a number of our local stockists have also been asked to close.

However, we have identified a number of local food outlets that remain open, and are keeping these stocked up. You can find your nearest stockist online at  or via the app.

You will need to enter your house number and postcode to find your nearest stockist.

If you cannot get hold of any, put a call out in your community to see if anyone has any spare. Maintain social distancing if they do - perhaps collect from outside their property.

Local councillors may also have a supply. Again, please make sure you maintain social distancing if collecting bags.

You are able to purchase food waste caddy liners from shops.

However,they must contain the below logo and EN standard 13432




Question 9: Will I get a reduction in my Council Tax?

Answer: Your Council Tax will not change as a result of any changes to your recycling and waste collections during the pandemic.

Question 10: I've had a pink sticker/letters about wrong items in recycling- is this process still valid?

Answer: No, please ignore this letter. This will have been sent on an automated basis, from previous collections.

We still encourage you to put correct items into your recycling bag, washing these items before putting them in your bag. This will keep your recycling clean and hygienic, for both yourselves and our waste collection teams.

This process will be live again, once this crisis is over.

Question 11: Can I put my rubbish into a litter bin, now you have cancelled collections?

Answer: No. We are continuing to provide a weekly kerbside collection of your waste. There is no need to put your household waste into litter bins. Do not do this, as it will increase the pressure on our street cleansing teams, when many staff have been deployed to alternative essential duties.

Question 12: Why have you shut the Household Waste Recycling Centres?

Answer: On Government instruction from 23rdMarch, residents must stay home apart from essential journeys. Therefore, our HWRCs have closed.

Question 13: My app/online calendar shows the wrong information, compared to the advice in the statement/online at 

Answer: We are updating this information as quickly as we can.

It may not be possible to update in advance and things are changing very quickly; please keep an eye on  for daily updates, and follow the Council's social media channels.

Question 14: I am self-isolating- can I have a temporary recorded collection (assisted lift) for my bins?

Answer: No. Recorded collections are for those with long term conditions, which means they require assistance with placing waste out for collection.

We are now running a weekly collection service, so please place your waste out for collection as soon as you are well.

If you have had symptoms, or a confirmed case of coronavirus, please follow the instructions for safe waste disposal of your waste to protect our staff.

Question 15: I'm already registered for a recorded collection (assisted lift) for my bins. Will this still continue?

Yes, this service will continue as normal. Leave your bins in their agreed location, within your property boundary.

Question 16: Why aren't you continuing to collect food separately in bin areas?

Answer: We need to make sure that food waste is in a container, to reduce the risk of bags being split open and keep waste as hygienic as possible for both residents, and our collection crews.

As you have a black wheeled bin, we are asking you to put your food waste in this bin until further notice.

Don't forget, your black bin is now being collected weekly, so your food waste will continue to be removed from your property on a weekly basis.

Question 17: Why are you collecting food waste separately in bag areas?

Answer: We are continuing to collect food waste from your kerbside caddy if you live in a bag area. We need to make sure that food waste is in a container, to reduce the risk of bags being split open and to keep waste as hygienic as possible for both residents, and our collection teams. Your food waste caddy will continue to be collected weekly.

Question 18: I live in a bin area- can I still separate my food inside the house?

Answer: Yes - if you have a kitchen caddy and caddy liners, you can continue to separate food inside your house. But you don't have to. When your caddy liner is full, tie it up and put it into your black bin for collection.

Question 19: I don't have a kerbside caddy/kitchen caddy/caddy liners

Answer:Bag area- you can order these online  or via the app. You can also find your local stockist via these channels, and they are receiving a regular supply of food caddy liners.

However, caddies need to be delivered to your property, so these will need to be ordered. We will be prioritising these deliveries as much as possible, to make sure you have what you need. Our standard delivery time is 15 working days, but we do anticipate some further delays to this.

Bin area:We will no longer be delivering these items to your property. If you do place an order, or have placed an order in recent weeks and not yet received your items, these will not be delivered.

Question 20: I've run out of red striped bags

Answer: You can use black bags. We will re-supply everyone with red striped bags once this crisis is over.

Please continue to use your green bags to recycle, and your food waste caddy to limit the number of red striped/black bags placed out for your weekly collection.

Question 21: Will you collect extra bags/bulky items of waste?

Answer: No. We have increased your collections, and you are now receiving a weekly collection of non-recyclable (general) waste. We will not be collecting any extra waste alongside your black bin/red striped bags, except in exceptional circumstances where a property is registered with the hygiene waste collection service.

Please be considerate of our collection teams, and our Cardiff community as a whole. We are trying to maintain a weekly kerbside service for everyone, whilst managing staff reductions due to re-deployment to other duties or illness. We all need to work together to do this, and placing out additional waste due will provide even more of a challenge for our crews and the city.

Question 22: I've had a missed collection- what shall I do?

Answer: Our collection teams are developing this new way of working, and we ask you to bear with us during this time.

If you have a missed collection, we won't be able to return to collect it. You do not need to contact us. We will return next week.

If you are registered for a recorded collection (assisted lift) and we miss your bins, we won't be able to return. But we do need to let our crews know they've missed you. Let us know via our social media channels, our online contact form here: 

Question 23: How we will be collecting your waste:

Answer:To simplify and ensure waste operations can continue with a reduced workforce, we may be unable to sort recyclable waste during the emergency, as such, it will go to the energy from waste plant along with the residual waste. This is a public health crisis, so this is the safest way to dispose of waste that may be carrying COVID-19. 

Where we are continuing to collect food waste separately, this will be going to our Anaerobic Digestion plant.

Cardiff wants to become the best recycling city in the world, so we want people to continue to recycle in their green bags, so they have space in their black bin and keep up their good habits for when the crisis is over.

Question 24: Why should we continue to separate our recycling?

Answer: We're asking residents in bag areas to continue to separate their food waste. This will keep it contained in a kerbside caddy and reduce the risk of your bags being split open.

We're asking you to continue to separate other materials in green bags, just as you normally would. We recognise that there would be no space in your black bin/red striped bags for these items if you didn't have a green bag collection.

Washing these materials before putting them into your green bags keeps material clean and hygienic, for both you and our collection teams.

We want everyone to stay in their normal recycling habits. Once this crisis is over, we are confident that we can be the leading core recycling City in the UK again.

Question 25: What is the Council's advice on managing green garden waste during the pandemic?

Answer: Unfortunately due to the prioritisation of resources we have temporarily SUSPENDED all garden waste collections. However, this doesn't mean you should stop enjoying the garden. You have a number of options for dealing with your garden waste.

The most environmentally-friendly way of dealing with grass cuttings, hedge trimmings etc. is to home compost. This can be as simple as putting all your cuttings in a neat pile in a quiet corner of the garden. Mix with small amounts of paper, cardboard and kitchen food waste peelings to create a pile that will break down within a few weeks to create great compost that can be reused in the garden. Alternatively, keep your garden waste in storage in your green bin/re-useable sacks.

We recommend you also follow  for waste related updates.

Question 26: What happens if I live in a flat complex?

Answer: If you live in a flat, continue to recycle as normal. Your food waste, general waste and recycling will be collected weekly.

Question 27 What do I do with my hygiene waste (nappies/incontinence waste)?

If you have a black bin: You can continue to use your yellow bags, or you can use black bags. Put them into your black bin. If they will not fit, our teams know which properties were using the hygiene service, and will collect additional bags from outside your bin.

If you live in a bag area, you can continue to use your yellow bags, or you can use black bags. Our teams know which properties were using the hygiene service, and will collect additional bags from outside your property.