Council to bring in fortnightly brown bin rounds with new food waste collection each week (From St Helens Star)
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Council to bring in fortnightly brown bin rounds with new food waste collection each week
2:07pm Tuesday 5th February 2013 in News
FORTNIGHTLY collections for brown bins will be rolled out as part of a drive to boost recycling rates in the town and cut costs, St Helens Council has confirmed.
The Star revealed last month how the controversial plans – which have split opinion among this newspaper’s readers - were in the pipeline.
This week the local authority – which is being squeezed financially because of a massive cut in funding - announced all 80,000 households will be switching from fortnightly to weekly box and bag recyclable collections from early next year.
It means brown bins will be collected once a fortnight, rather than weekly.
However, recycling service will be significantly expanded, with all items taken from homes on the same day of the week in an attempt to avoid confusion.
According to the council, a key factor in reducing brown bin volumes will be the introduction of “food caddies” for most households.
Residents will be asked to place food waste in the containers, which will be collected as part of the weekly recycling sweep, with contents taken to a specialist compost facility to create bio-gas and a soil enhancer.
The local authority added that the changes will help them deal with a £50million cut in Government funding and boost recycling rates, which is needed to meet targets and avoid hefty EU fines.
Currently St Helens recycles just 32 per cent, lower than Sefton’s 40 per cent, which is the highest in the Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority region.
Cans, glass, paper, plastic bottles, kitchen waste and cardboard will be among the items that can be handed over to the council every week.
Single collection trucks – with segregated compacting and storage areas – will replace multi-vehicle collections.
Brown bin collections will alternate on a weekly basis with the green (garden waste) bin collections.
Councillor Richard McCauley, cabinet member for environmental protection and safer communities, said: “All residents will ever have to remember is their collection day.
“If it’s Tuesday for example, everything will happen on that day – week in, week out.”
The council cited other local authorities that have introduced fortnightly collections and experienced a 10 -14 per cent increase in the amount of waste recycled, leading to a drop in both collection and disposal costs.
In a Star online poll carried earlier this year 63 per cent said they were against the switch to fortnightly brown bin collections.
Residents who want to increase recycling can order replacement containers online (www.sthelens.gov.uk) or by phoning the council on 01744 676789.