Don't waste your energy - recycle your old batteries

A trial intervention to see if we can encourage more residents to use the kerbside battery collection service in parts of Lawrence Weston and Westbury-upon-Trym.

From Thursday 2nd May, in partnership with Ecosurety, some residents in Bristol are being given a fun reminder not to put their batteries in the black general waste bin but to recycle them at the kerbside.

Don't bin your batteries

They will receive a battery shaped leaflet which has lots of useful information in it to show what happens to their batteries once they are taken and some paper bags to encourage residents to collect used household batteries and put them out for recycling.

The trial is testing whether a little reminder will increase battery collections in the area. If results are significant then it may be rolled out citywide.

There are no changes to the normal battery collections. Once the paper bags are gone they are to be put out on recycling day in a small clear bag and residents from all over the city are encouraged to do this. 

Why are we doing the project?

  • 178 million used batteries are hoarded in UK homes. They contain heavy metals including lead, mercury, zinc and lithium - all of which can be recycled
  • Recovered materials are used to make new batteries and other products
  • They are harmful to the environment if put in the black wheelie bins

Don't bin your batteries


Why is Bristol Waste doing this project?

  • To test if a simple nudge technique will increase awareness about kerbside battery collection and therefore increase battery capture
  • To stop batteries from being placed into landfill, where they cause damage to the environment, when they should be recycled

Which areas of Bristol have been selected for the trial?

  • 6 recycling rounds which equate to about 4000 households in parts of Lawrence Weston and Westbury-Upon-Trym
  • They have not been targetted for any particular reason

What are residents being given?

  • A battery shaped leaflet - download below

Icon Dont-Bin-Your-Batteries-BWC-Leaflet.pdf (991.4 KB)

  • 5 brown paper bags

Has there been a methodology/collection change? Are residents now required to only use the paper bags?

  • There has been no change to the way we collect batteries. Residents can still put batteries in clear plastic bags or loose in their boxes. The paper bags provided aim to raise awareness and to make collection and presentation of batteries easier

Time period – how long will the trial be lasting for?

  • We will be continuing to weigh the batteries collected from the 6 trial rounds for the foreseeable future to establish whether the campaign has had an impact

Can residents get hold of more brown paper bags once they have used all of them?

  • As the bags are only as a reminder about our battery collection service, once the bags provided with the roll out are gone we will not be sending any more out – residents can resume presenting batteries in clear plastic bags

How should residents generally present batteries?

  • Please put in a small, clear plastic bag and put in the black box

Are the bags and leaflets recyclable?

  • Yes. They are made from recycled stock and can be recycled in the green box with your cardboard. Why not reuse the treasury tag by putting a hole in your waste paper, putting the tag through it and creating a shopping list for your fridge?

Who is funding the trial?

  • Bristol Waste have partnered up with Ecosurety, a leading Bristol compliance scheme who are committed to making a positive impact on UK recycling in the key areas of education, collaboration, innovation and infrastructure

If you have any queries about the project please contact 0117 304 9022 or email

Don't Bin Your Batteries - In partnership with Ecosurety

Ecosurety logo