Residential waste management in the Netherlands, including trash collection and recycling, is administered at the municipal (‘gemeente’) level. Each household is charged an annual ‘afvalbelasting’ (garbage tax) to help defray the cost.
Municipal websites in the Netherlands publish a calendar of trash collection days for the current year and provide addresses of bulk waste disposal sites and recycling stations.
General household waste (‘restafval’) is any non-recyclable, non-hazardous, residual household waste. Typically a home is issued a trash bin for depositing the waste. The bin is then placed at the curbside on the day of scheduled pickup. Some municipalities allow the bins to be placed on the curbside the night before.
Check which days trash is collected (‘ophaaldagen’) on the national website ‘MijnAfvalWijzer‘ by entering your postal code and house number.
BULK HOUSEHOLD TRASH
Over-sized waste items (‘grofvuil’), such as an old couch, mattress or washing machine should be brought to the city dump or collection point (‘afvalspunten’). The location of the nearest dump site will be shown on the municipal website.
Many Dutch municipalities offer a pickup service for over-sized waste when the resident is unable to bring it to the afvalspunt themselves. A pickup can be scheduled by phone or online. In some areas, a fee is charged for grofvuil collection, but in most municipalities, the cost of service is covered by the annual ‘afvalbelasting’ (garbage tax).
Garden waste such as tree branches and hedge clippings should be placed in a green bin (if one has been provided by the municipality). Otherwise, garden waste should be taken to a local collection facility.
If the debris is too large for the resident to bring to an ‘afvalspunten’, they should request a bulk trash pickup. When placing bulk garden waste on the curb for bulk pickup, branches should be tied together and care should be exercised to ensure no sharp edges jut outward that could cause harm to others. The owner remains liable for any injuries sustained by bulk waste on the street until it has been collected.
Debris from renovations and home improvement work does not qualify as residential waste and a bulk pickup should not be requested. Construction debris must be transported to a local dump site by private means.
DANGEROUS OR TOXIC PRODUCTS
– Old medication should be returned to a pharmacy for proper disposal. Medications should never be put down a sink or in the toilet.
– Batteries can be deposited in collection boxes found in supermarkets, petrol stations, hardware stores, etc. or be brought to a collection point.
– Small hazardous waste or chemical waste such as energy saving light bulbs, detergents, paint, varnish, cooking oil and cosmetics should be taken to a collection point (afvalspunten).
RECYCLING IN THE NETHERLANDS
The Netherlands is committed to reducing trash through recycling efforts of reusable waste such as glass, plastic, paper and textiles. Most Dutch neighborhoods have recycling bins (‘wijkcontainers’).
Households are not issued their own glass recycling bin. Instead there are neighborhood recycling containers. Food and drink glass packaging is the only type of glass which should be placed in the glass recycling containers marked ‘glas’. Other types of glass, including lightbulbs should not be deposited in these containers but rather sropped in a collection box or taken to a collection point.
Plastic waste should be deposited in neighborhood (buurt) recycling containers and placed in the one marked ‘plastic verpakkingen’. In addition, plastic bottles which have been charged a deposit can be returned to the local supermarket for redemption.
Paper and Cardboard
Paper and cardboard items should be taken to the neighborhood recycling containers and placed in the one marked ‘papier’.
Old clothes, rags and other textile items should be deposited in the designated containers found in most districts. Alternatively, they can be taken to a local secondhand shop (‘kringloop’) if they are still usable.
MUNICIPAL WASTE & RECYCLING CONTACTS
|AMSTERDAM||Tel: 14 020||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|
|DELFT||Tel: 14 015||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|
|EINDHOVEN||Tel: 14 040||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|
|THE HAGUE||Tel: 14 070||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|
|LEIDEN||Tel: 14 071||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|
|MAASTRICHT||Tel: 14 043||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|
|ROTTERDAM||Tel: 14 010||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|
|UTRECHT||Tel: 14 030||Overview||Trash Pickup||Bulk Waste||Collection Points||Sorting & Recycling|