Green Sky goes big for glass recycling

A grant from the Glass Packaging Forum will enable Hawke’s Bay-based Green Sky Waste Solutions to more than double its glass storage facilities.

A grant from the Glass Packaging Forum has improved glass handling and storage facilities for one of Hawke’s Bay’s biggest recycling collectors.

Green Sky Waste Solutions, which has had the kerbside recycling contract for the Napier and Hastings councils since 2013, was able to increase the size of its glass storage facility thanks to a grant of just under $17,000. Material from Green Sky’s Central Hawke’s Bay District Council contract is also processed through the Whakatu site, outside Hastings, adding pressure to its storage facility.

However, the grant will allow the company to more than double its storage capacity by increasing its concrete pad from 72m2 to 168m2. Glass needs to be separated into brown, green (including blue) and clear before it can be recycled into new bottles and jars at O-I New Zealand, the country’s only glass manufacturer.

Glass collected by Green Sky is colour-sorted on board the collection vehicles, known as source-separation, then tipped off into the bunkers where it is visually checked for quality. It is then sent to O-I via rail in top loaded shipping containers.

The extra space will mean Green Sky can store up to 40 tonnes of each glass colour. This will remove storage capacity issues and reduce the cost of glass transport over peak festive holidays, says Green Sky Director Darren Green.

It will also allow the company the option of road freight as well as address a number of health and safety concerns associated with the unloading of glass, and on-site traffic congestion, Darren says.
The initial pad and bunkers were also built thanks to a GPF grant and Darren says.

“Before we could hold about a day’s worth of glass, but with the extra space will be able to hold three days’ worth. It’ll be good to have the extra storage for when there are delays or during really busy times like over Christmas,” he says.

The new concrete pad had been built and work on the bunkers will be finished soon. “The volume of glass we are collecting is ever-increasing. By the time summer rolls round again we will be well prepared for the extra volume that the festive season brings,” Darren says.