The Antrim Borough Council has started a new scheme aimed to help re-use paint via its household recycling centres at a local level. The scheme is the brainchild of, and is being organised by, the East Belfast Mission.
The goal of the scheme is to collect non-hazardous, reasonable quality paints, wood stains, and varnishes so that they can be re-used into of being sent on to a landfill. Almost any type of unwanted paint product will be accepted but paint containers with an orange hazard symbol on them will not be accepted.
All of the paint that is accepted into the programme will be used at the East Belfast Mission furniture re-use scheme to help with its social housing programme. The unused paint will also be sold at the Re-Store shops also run by the East Belfast Mission and at the Antrim branch as well. Any money that is raised by the sales will be put back into community and social projects.
Councillor Roy Thompson and the Mayor of Antrim stated that last year more than 332 million litres of paint were sold across the UK and out of this they estimate that about 50 million litres were not used, stored in garages or homes, or simply just tossed after the project was done. According to Thompson, this would be enough spare paint to fill up the Antrim Forum pool over forty times.
Chair of the Council’s Environment & Borough Services Committee, Alderman Mervyn Rea, stated that the paint re-use scheme is a very exciting scheme that will save paint from landing in the landfill and will help produce new paint that can be used on some great community projects. Rea added that she would urge all people to take a look in their sheds and garages and bring any leftover wood stains, varnishes, and paint to the Recycling Centres that are located across the Borough.