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Glossary

This glossary of terms was compiled from a wide range of sources and covers some of the most commonly used waste-related words and abbreviations.

Please select a letter from the A-Z index to find the definition of a term.

A-Z index
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Z
R
Recyclates
Waste materials that are suitable for recycling.
Recycle
Recycle is the third stage in the Waste Hierarchy and means using waste materials to manufacture other products of an identical or similar nature.
Recycling
Recycling involves reprocessing waste materials to produce new materials. Recycling materials like cans, glass, paper and textiles recovers the valuable resources in waste to make new products. The recycled materials can be made into the same product (closed-loop recycling) or a different product (open-loop recycling).
Recycling Centre
A manned site with a collection of Recycling Points for depositing recyclates. Recycling Centres usually accept a wider range of waste materials than Recycling Points and can include other facilities, such as normal household waste disposal. Previously known as Civic Amenity Sites.
Recycling Point
An unmanned site with a container, or a collection of containers, for depositing recyclates, eg at a supermarket. Previously know as bring sites or bottle banks.
Reduce
Reduce is the first stage in the Waste Hierarchy and means taking steps to lower the amount of waste that we produce. Waste that is not created in the first place does not need to be reused, recycled or disposed of, so preventing or reducing waste generation is the most efficient way to deal with our waste. Also called waste minimisation.
Reuse
Reuse is the second stage in the Waste Hierarchy. Product reuse involves the multiple use of an item in its original form, for its original purpose or for an alternative, with or without reconditioning. In many cases, waste that cannot be prevented can be reused to avoid buying new products. This helps to ensure that we get the most out of our waste and saves valuable natural resources.
 
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