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Sydney man's incredible recycling act: 'Never seen anything like it'

The man described as a 'record breaker' was snapped by an impressed local, seemingly on his way to a Return and Earn hub.

A Sydney man has raised some eyebrows after a photo of him pushing a trolley down an affluent street completely overflowing with bags of recycling was captured by a local.

The man was spotted in the Northern Beaches while steering the trolley believed to be heroically laden with recyclable items in garbage bags.

The impressed neighbour shared the image with Sydney 2GB radio host Ben Fordham who relayed their astonishment on air on Friday morning.

"He's loaded on empty cans and he's pushing a trolley down my street," the message said. "He must be heading to a Return and Earn hub where you get 10 cents back per can. I've never seen anything like it."

A photo of a man in Sydney's Northern Beaches pushing a trolley with 9 or more garbage bags with cans in them to seemingly be recycled through Return and Earn. Source: 2GB
A man in Sydney's Northern Beaches was spotted pushing a trolley with nine or more garbage bags. Source: 2GB (2GB)

Mr Fordham admitted he's never seen so many bags — counting at least nine — ostensibly being taken to a Return and Earn, labelling the man a clear "record breaker".

"How much money could he earn from this haul?" he wondered.

What is Return and Earn?

The popular NSW recycling scheme first rolled out in 2017 and sees millions of recycling bottles, cans and cartons being returned, as a way to help the environment and also "put money back into the hands of the community".

With over 600 return locations in the state, people can get 10 cents for an empty 150-millilitre to 3-litre drink container — with a '10c refund' marking on the item being the best way to identify if it's eligible.

Some of the refund options include digital transfer, cash, donation or a redeemable retail voucher.

Sydney man spotlighted for recycling effort

While Mr Fordham highlighted that some people would not be happy with someone potentially rummaging through their bin, he mostly wished the man "good luck".

"I suppose yes it might be a little uncomfortable if you've got personal items in the bin but this is in the recycling and there wouldn't be any personal items in there apart from maybe evidence of what you're drinking?," he said on 2GB.

Others also took to praising the man. "Good for him! I don’t mind anyone taking cans and bottles out of my recycles bin as long as they don’t leave a mess on the ground," one person said on the program's Facebook page.

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