pollution in thailand, the caribbean
Jun 28 2018

Recycling in Mallorca and the path ahead of us


Global Paradise Pollution

Pollution threatens paradise in the Caribbean. ‘The Beach’ is back in the news due to Pollution in Thailand. So, protecting marine areas and reducing pollution by recycling in Mallorca is critical.

Since the days of being a well kept secret, Mallorca is now becoming a hot spot for people around the globe.  Of course one of the major appeals of Mallorca is its clear blue, warm waters.  These are especially relevant to visitors and residents.  Due to increasing usage of single use plastics and the incorrect disposal of waste  that can harm our environment Mallorca could sadly be on-route to joining the list of polluted paradises.  Yet, we can all help to prevent this happening.  Whether you are a tourist or a resident.

Pollution in Thailand and the Caribbean

First of all, the epidemic is on a global scale, so we only include a small snapshot here.  Yet this snapshot says it all really.  Pollution in Thailand threatens some of its best beaches.  Thailand’s popularity soured after the movie ‘The Beach’ with that fame however came mass tourism. As a result the movie is back in the news but for all the wrong reasons.  Locations that suffer include Phuket, Koh Samui , Maya Beach is now closed to tourists .  Another, most noteworthy destination suffering is the Caribbean .

Preventing the inevitable in Mallorca

Local Government in Mallorca and associations such as ‘Asociacion Ondine‘ and yachting publications like Metstrade. are trying to tackle the problem here before it gets out of hand.  One of the most important factors here is raising awareness of this growing issue.  So we wanted to share this information with you and encourage you to share thoughts with us and our members.

A greener future

Local government is making every effort to create Marine Protected Areas and work with associations on education projects at schools and beach clean-ups.  What we want to do here is help demystify what many of us find a challenge and that is separating your waste.  What can and can’t be recycled and how ?  Spain is considered one of the most environmentally aware and prepared countries in Europe.  So we need to take advantage of the facilities and services provided.  However, it is a fact that information is not always easy to find; particularly for those that don’t speak Catalan or good Spanish.  We have communicated with local government to share some useful information with you.  We know there are still gaps in the information we have, so feel free to share more information here.

So, we start with the coloured bins on the streets in residential areas:

Light containers

  • Recycling 2 tons of plastic, we save 1 ton of oil
  • With 80 soda cans you can make a bike rim
  • With 6 brics you can make a shoe box


Plastic containers Cassette tapes, VHS
Plastic bags CD, DVD and floppy disks
Brics Plastics other than containers
Cans and aerosols Toys
Trays of plastic or white cork Textiles and shoes
Metal covers and sheets Packed containers
Aluminum foil Containers of toxic products
Pots and plastic pots of domestic origin


Any lightweight container with this symbol

The containers deposited in the yellow container are taken to the packaging selection plant, where they are classified, pressed and packaged to be sent to recycling plants outside the island.[/vc_column][/vc_row]


Recycling a glass bottle we save:

  • The energy to charge your mobile phone for a year
  • 1 kg of CO2 contamination
  • The energy of 12 washing clothes


Glass bottles Bulbs and fluorescents
Glass jars Flat glass and mirrors
Other glass containers Ceramics and porcelain



Any glass container with this symbol


Dishes, drinks and bowls


Deposit schedule for containers: from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

The glass that is collected from the containers is stored and receives pretreatment in Mallorca, to obtain the first material, which is exported to the factories to make pots, bottles, etc.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column]


Give life to your waste, with the organic remains you can make fertilizer for plants


Remains of fruit and vegetables Diapers, cufflinks and tampons
Remains of meat and fish Remains of liquid food and all kinds of oil
Remains of bread and food in general Agranar dust and vacuum cleaner bags
Handkerchiefs and paper towels Ash and cigarette lids
Kitchen paper Remains of gardening
Coffee breaks and infusions Plant residues treated with pesticides
Woods treated
Stool and other animal remains
Fabrics and leather goods


Deposit schedule for containers: from  7pm to 11pm.

The remains of organic matter are transported to the composting plants of the island, where they undergo a process of transformation into fertilizer or compost, a natural fertilizer for agriculture and gardening.


It is only rejection if you can not go to another container

Rejection ends incinerated; what you put in another container, recycled.


Diapers, cufflinks and tampons Glass
Ash and cigarette lids Paper and cardboard
Broken toys Light containers
Agranar dust and vacuum cleaner bags Hazardous waste

You can deposit the organic matter in the waste container in case you do not have an organic container available to you or you do not participate in this collection system.

Deposit schedule for containers: from  7pm to 11pm.

Rejection is the one that can not go to other containers. What is deposited in the gray container leads to the incineration plant with energy recovery from Son Reus.

One liter of cooking oil can contaminate 1,000 liters of water

Leave the used cooking oil, when it is cold, in closed plastic bottles (you can reuse bottles of water, soft drinks, etc.).

You will find pick-up points in neighborhood houses, sports centers, markets, the recycling truck and selective mobile collection platforms in the historic center.


  • Never throw oil in the washing machine or in the toilet.

It will contaminate the water and obstruct the pipes.

  • Do not mix it with motor oil

This service only includes vegetable oil.

The oil that is collected in bottles in the orange container is used for the production of biodiesel in industries outside of Mallorca.

Clothing and footwear

  • If you deposit your clothes and shoes in good condition, other people who need them can use it
  • You will extend the life of your clothes and contribute to the reintegration of people of disadvantaged groups


Clothes and shoes in good condition (in closed plastic bags) Old patches
Handbags, backpacks, belts, etc. Clothes or footwear in bad shape
 Flasks and sheets


The clothes deposited in the containers of Càritas Mallorca and the Deixalles Foundation are collected by these entities that classify, repair and sell it for sale and for social uses.

Other waste



Expired medications, remnants of pharmaceutical products, any medication you no longer need and their packaging are collected at pharmacies.

Do not accumulate medications at home or mix them with other residues.

Bulbs and fluorescents

You will find collecting points in shops of electrical appliances and in some public places (neighborhood houses, markets, offices, etc.). You can also take them to  the green park and the recycling truck.

Some bulbs and some fluorescents contain toxic gases; Do not mix them with other waste or take them to the glass container.


There are collection points in stores, supermarkets, supermarkets, public buildings,  green parks and the recycling truck.

Make sure the batteries and accumulators are properly treated; do not throw them into manure.

Sources of advice

There are gaps in this information and we are not the source of information however, we can offer some reference points and welcome any information you want to share.  So answers require further research and common sense.  Essentially though, if you are unsure it is best to consider it non-recyclable.  Here are some web links which will help you make those decisions:

Finally, here is a pint of contact who can also offer some advice or at least point you in the right direction:

Roland Bahón Menéndez

(Tècnic Ambiental)

Ajuntament de Palma

E-mail: [email protected]

Tlfo.: 971774300  Ext.: 6097

Fax:  971463908

One Comment

  • Mallorca Yachts & Property 4th July 2018 at 12:04 pm

    We are based in Santa Catalina and it seems the organic waste bins have dissapeared. I Contacted the council about this and this is the response i got:
    “You are right. Organic bins are already installed just in the old city. So, you have to wait for the deployment of organic bins in the whole city. Then, until this arrive (it is planned to start by the end of this year until the end of 2020, progressively in the different neighbourhoods in Palma, I don’t know the exact order for this), you have to still throw organic waste in the grey bins.”
    So, it is being dealt with. I hope that helps any of you that have noticed these bins dissapear

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