Waste and recycling in Waverley – the Lib Dem response

by Stephen Tall on March 5, 2009

Lib Dem Voice mentioned here on Monday the Financial Times’s report on the political pitfalls of waste and recycling collections, highlighting the electoral troubles it caused the Lib Dem group in Waverley in 2007. In today’s paper, Waverely Lib Dem councillor Celia Savage, has a letter published in today’s paper, noting:

Collecting waste on alternate weeks increases recycling in a cost-effective way because the materials for recycling are collected on the other alternate weeks. One or the other is collected every week. This was introduced in Waverley by the Liberal Democrats in response to the government-imposed recycling target of 40 per cent. The recycling rate here rocketed as a result, and achieved 40 per cent – as it presumably did in the other districts you list. A separate weekly collection of food waste would make things easier for householders, and it was our intention to introduce such a scheme before long.

NB: later today, LDV will publish an article by Iain Coleman, executive councillor in charge of bins in Cambridge when the council moved to fortnightly rubbish collections.

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My councl, Dacorum, Herts., has been tory controlled for years.
They trialled five or so options then had a public consultation on them together with the council recommendation.
The result was the alternate green and black weekly bin.
Although it is a tory council, to give credit where credit is due, I have to admit that the scheme was well done, and the recycling rate went up to the 40s as soon as it was rolled out across the borough.
There was an early period when there was some national confusion about what food waste could go in the green bin; this centred around the concerns about animal virus transmission.
But it seems now to be accepted that any food waste can go to recycling.
We have also locally had the usual press outbursts about maggots from a few people.
While I was a councillor I came in for some of these; I used to tell people that if they either wrapped the food waste in newspaper or used compostable liners in their food waste receptacle they would get no maggots.
The problem was client hygiene, not council method.
I also note that many people locally use the fresh-bins scheme by which their bins are washed out after collection.

Personally, I simply use compostable liners in my wet waste pedal bin and have never had any trouble with maggots or smell.
But it is not easy to find the compostable pedal bin liners on the supermarket shelves. You really have to search. If they could be made more visible I am sure people would buy them.

So, nothing wrong with alternative week collection but client food hygiene could do with some education.

by Elizabeth Patterson on March 5, 2009 at 2:04 pm. Reply #

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