Over half of the household rubbish in North East Somerset and Bath is now being recycled. The publication of new figures has shown that the amount recycled has increased from 46% to 52%, partly due to a new doorstep collection for food waste which was started in October 2010.
The Council said that there have been other major contributing factors, including a new waste treatment plant. The public’s new commitment to environmental issues has also been increased by the extension of other collections at curbside, including collections of tetra packs.
Approximately 14,000 tonnes of waste have been cut from the amount that was sent to landfill in the past year. Almost 4,300 tonnes of food waste was sent last year to be used as agricultural compost. In the past this would have been dumped into landfill and so the council has saved £118,000 in landfill tax.
However 30,000 households, about 42% of the houses in the area, are not using the scheme to recycling their food waste. David Dixon, Oldfield’s Lib Dem representative, is a cabinet member for the neighbourhoods and claims that it is important that people take more responsibility. He is reported to have said that the council has invested heavily in the food waste collection; however they do urge more residents to use the system, whilst the council continues to work for a higher level of compliance.
Recycling in this way reduces the amount going to landfill, which means there are less harmful gases released into the air and it also saves on the amount of tax. This in turn releases more money to be spent on other council issues.
Conservatives on the council, who had been in charge when the scheme was started, praised the effort of the local residents and their commitment to the waste scheme.