These days if you buy anything more than a banana from the fruit and veg shop, you're likely to be left with something you will have to throw away.

We bin millions of tons of waste every year.

And you know how it goes: you put your wheelie bins out on their designated days, the rubbish is collected, and you never see it again.

But have you ever wondered what happens to your waste after it disappears from your kerb?

We know some discarded items can be recycled, but what about the rest? Does it all just go to landfill?

Household Waste

That's the rubbish you put in your purple - or grey, green or brown if you live in Sefton, Wirral or St Helens - wheelie bin.

Much of this 'waste' can often be recycled or reused in some way or another.

For example, books found in tact are taken to be sold at charity shops. And some hard plastics, such as toys and plant pots, are recycled into products such as outdoor furniture and car parts.

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Trains then take the rubbish to an energy facility in Teesside.

The plant uses the waste to generate electricity and steam, which is either used by businesses on the same industrial estate in Teesside, or returned to the National Grid.

This has been the process since 2016, to divert rubbish from landfill, save council taxpayers’ money and benefit the environment and local economy by generating energy from waste.

Recyclable Waste

The cardboard, glass and other items you put in your recycling bin.

These items are sent to one of two sorting centres - one in Gillmoss, and one in Bidston, Wirral.

The sorted materials are then sent to various reprocessing companies.

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Paper, for example, is taken to a number of paper recyclers in the UK and Europe.

Plastic bottles are taken to a facility in Essex for resale in the UK and Europe.