More bin changes likely in bid to boost recycling

Published on: 03 Dec 2015

SMALLER black bins are likely to replace wheelie bins in South Gloucestershire next year as part of continuing efforts to increase recycling and save money.
The council says that the 240-litre bins are too big for most households, meaning it is too easy for people to use them for rubbish that could be recycled.
The authority also intends to “simplify the kerbside offer for residents”, introducing weekly recycling collections and using boxes instead of bags. The black bins would still be emptied fortnightly and there are no plans to change the optional, paid-for garden waste collections.
People are being asked to comment on the proposals by February 15 next year. A series of roadshows to explain the scheme is taking place across the area, including one at the Co-Op in Downend on December 15 from 10am to 4pm. Presentations are also being made at meetings of parish councils and community groups, among them Downend & Bromley Heath Parish Council on December 10 at 7pm at Downend Baptist Church.
The idea is that the 240-litre bins would be replaced by 140-litre bins. Families of six or more, or with three children in nappies, would be permitted one large bin. The qualifying criteria for medical conditions would remain unchanged.
The council says that although recycling in the district has improved from seven per cent in 2000 to 47.5 per cent last year, this is still below target. More than half the waste in black bins is recyclable.
Each household in South Gloucestershire generated 1,061 kg of waste in 2014-15. This is an equivalent of the average weight of 14 people. Every year residents throw away 18,000 tonnes of food.
Another area being explored is reuse. A shop selling discarded items has opened at the Thornbury Sort It site and it is hoped a similar outlet can be opened at the Mangotsfield tip.
Councillor Heath Goddard, chairwoman of South Gloucestershire Council’s communities committee said the changes were necessary because the district still produced a remarkably hbigh amount of waste compared with neighbours.
“We are pleased to be able to offer a new weekly recycling service from the doorstep. This should make life easier and more convenient for our residents,” she said.
“With this new service in place, and with many residents already struggling to fill their black landfill bins on a two-weekly cycle, we will be adjusting bin sizes accordingly. Our neighbours in Bristol and North Somerset already successfully use much smaller bins than we currently do.
“This new strategy allows us to deliver on our ambitious recycling targets, achieve our savings targets and still improve services for local people. We are proud to say that with creative thinking we don’t need to choose between caring for our environment, providing good quality public services and being financially responsible. You can do all three.”
Some residents on the council’s Facebook page commented that paying for new black bins for every house was a waste of money and went against the spirit of recycling, while others were concerned that the smaller bins would lead to an increase in flytipping.
Some people also repeated calls for the council to drop the £36 annual charge for green bins. The Conservatives who now run South Gloucestershire have come under fire from opposition councillors for not fulfilling their election pledge to scrap the unpopular “tax” .
The council is inviting comments on how the proposed changes will affect residents via its survey, which can be completed online or on paper.
Further information is available at libraries and One Stop Shops or by visiting www.southglos.gov.uk/wastechanges

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