Bin charges: How to cut costs and reduce waste

Bin charges: How to cut costs and reduce waste

The latest data from the EPA reveals that Ireland generated 3.17 million tonnes of waste in 2021

Waste disposal is a lucrative business in Ireland, with household waste collection companies sweeping up around €350 million in revenue every year.

There are around 40 companies that collect household waste across the country. Ten of these are quite small and would count their customers in the hundreds, rather than thousands. Many of these companies also collect commercial waste.

The latest data from the Environmental Protection Agency reveals that Ireland generated 3.17 million tonnes of waste in 2021.

Of this, 57% came from households and 43% from commercial and public service sources.

The four biggest companies for household waste collection are Panda, Greyhound, Bord na Móna and Country Clean. For commercial waste, Panda, Bord na Móna, Thorntons Recycling and Keywaste have the most customers.

The number of providers you have to choose from will depend on where you live – though most will have a choice of at least two.

How to choose your bin provider?

First, find out which waste collection providers are available in your area. You can find this out by visiting their websites.

Next, you should start comparing prices. Make sure to note down the weight allowances for each company and take this into account when comparing costs. Pay per lift options might also be worth considering for some.

A spokesman for the Irish Waste Management Association (IWMA) said you need to find a service that works for you and your circumstances.

“If you’re a pensioner living on your own, you’re probably going to have very little waste, so you want to find a price plan that is less about service charge and more about pay as you go.” he advised.

“If you’re paying per kilo or per lift and maybe you’re only putting out a bin four times a year, you’ll find a plan that works for that,” he added.

Is it worth switching bin provider?

Many waste collection companies have upped their prices recently, so it is always worth shopping around. The IWMA said underlying costs have been rising for waste collection companies, in particular labour and fuel costs.

But they believe there is strong competition in the Irish market.

“We’re the only country in the world where every bin is weighed. We’re the only country in the world that can tell our customers what their weights are and we can charge by weight or we can charge by lift. We just need to get the message out there about how important it is to segregate our waste, but we’re quite advanced in Ireland.”

How much choice you have will depend on where you’re living.