Bid to simplify tenement recycling

The aim is to send less waste to landfill. Picture: Jeremy Stockton
The aim is to send less waste to landfill. Picture: Jeremy Stockton
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THOUSANDS of residents will take part in the Capital’s first ever tenement recycling drive after the streets selected for two pilot programmes were revealed.

New projects will see homes in and around Hillside and Bellevue targeted with a range of measures aimed at increasing recycling rates by ­boosting capacity and expanding the range of items that can be processed.

The first pilot – set to be rolled out in Brunswick Street, Brunton Gardens, Brunton Place and Brunton Terrace, among other areas – will simplify the mix of recyclable materials by combining paper, cardboard, cans and plastic bottles in one bin instead of two.

In Bellevue, around a quarter of the larger 3200-litre containers, used for landfill, will take mixed dry recyclables while 1280-litre paper and packaging bins are to be replaced with glass banks.

It is anticipated the scheme will be extended to the rest of the city’s flats and tenements following the pilots.

Opposition leaders have ­welcomed next month’s launch but said recycling rates here were still behind a national ­target of 50 per cent.

Councillor Chas Booth, environment spokesman for the city’s Greens, said: “It is essential that the city changes the balance of waste, not least because putting waste to landfill costs a massive £15 million a year – that is £15m not going to schools, care homes and parks, to name some examples.

“So the direction of travel is correct. But the council needs to be more ambitious if it is to catch up on where other ­councils are and to meet its own targets.

“And it is getting it right at street level which counts. Bins need to be picked up on time and as planned, otherwise ­people quickly lose confidence in the service.”

He added: “If the council can get the service and infrastructure right then I think we’ll see a real rise in residents’ enthusiasm for waste reduction, for re-use and for recycling.”

The pilots come as city bosses continue a city roll-out of “slimmed-down” wheelie bins containing 140 litres of landfill rubbish – down from 240 litres held by the green containers used previously.

Councillor Lesley Hinds, environment leader, said: “Improving recycling rates is a real priority for the council as we aim to drive down landfill and the associated costs, as well as making a positive impact on the environment.

“A similar approach to ­simplified recycling elsewhere in the city has already seen a significant drop in rubbish being sent to landfill, and I know that many people living in flats and tenements want to contribute to this.”