For residents who are recycling, questions are arising about the benefit of rewards. The rewards schemes worked out well in the beginning but now it is unclear if they actually lead to changes long-term in behaviour a report said.
There has been a warning against a one size fits all from deputy chairman Darren Johnson of the environmental committee. This follows Lambeth residents becoming the first in London to be offered rewards for recycling. A Carrots and Sticks report on Tuesday said the lowest recycling rate in the country is in London with just about 1/3 of the total waste being recycled.
The report said the rates if recycling have dramatically improved where there are schemes of penalty and reward but there are also drawbacks to the schemes. The reports says there is a possibility because of the transient population, the number of households without internet service and the large number of flats may mean the success of the reward scheme could be affected.
It warns that the compulsory schemes could start to discourage communication with residents. He continued saying it is positive that the rates continue to increase but there is a great deal more needed to cut the waste mountain in London.
There are unique challenges that face the capital and it is obvious there is no one size fits all approach for London. Whatever scheme is ultimately used it needs to be done for the long term and adjusted as changes are needed. The committee called for schemes for London to be designed for the unique issues the capital possesses. They warned that weight-based schemes could lead to deliberate generating of more waste to maximize rewards.