Cardiff waste collections could change to every three weeks
Ted Peskett, Local Democracy Reporter
A trial which would see non-recyclable waste collections change to once every three weeks could be introduced in Cardiff in a bid to improve recycling rates.
Cardiff Council’s cabinet is set to make a decision on whether or not to approve a new recycling strategy, which could include trialling a number of measures like moving from non-recyclable waste collections every two weeks to every three weeks.
The proposed trial would apply to areas where residents have wheelie bins.
Another proposal is to trial a reduction in the number of bags of non-recyclable waste households can put out from three to two per fortnight.
Cardiff Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Change, Cllr Caro Wild, said: “All the evidence shows that in some cases you need to make it easier to do the recycling, which of course we collect every week on your doorstep, and less convenient to do the general waste.
“If you have got two choices and the easier choice is you can chuck it in the black bin, and that black bin is big enough for you to keep putting stuff in, then are you being pushed in every way to recycle?”
The proposed recycling strategy would run until 2025 if approved and includes other ideas to boost recycling in Cardiff, like expanding the rollout of a segregated recycling pilot scheme to more parts of the city.
Earlier this year, about 4,000 homes took part in a pilot which saw recyclables separated by residents and placed into specific containers for collection.
Bottles and jars were placed in one container, paper and cardboard in another, and plastic and metal or tin containers in a third.
It is hoped, through the strategy, that further pilots can be developed to ensure that houses in multiple occupation and flats recycle better.
The mess on some of Cardiff’s residential streets caused by gulls opening recycling bags, which have been filled with non-recyclable waste and nappies, is a prominent issue in parts of the city.
Cllr Wild said he hopes the strategy will address this. However, he added that education would also be key to tackling the issue.
He said: “We know there are serious problems, particularly with food contamination, which is a big thing we want to get behaviour change on.
“There are going to be new education campaigns, particularly around food and glass to go along with this trial.
“That is something that is very easy for each household to recycle. Every week we provide the bags.
“In some cases we just need to really make sure that people are encouraged to do that, but then where they are not doing it, we are enforcing.
“We want to strengthen some of our enforcement because it is not fair when you can literally have a whole road woken up by seagulls or litter strewn all over the pavement because one or two households couldn’t put their food waste in the correct department.”
Broken down, the proposed recycling strategy for Cardiff will be a phased programme which includes the following key aims:
- A continued move from co-mingled recycling in green plastic bags to kerbside recycling in separate containers
- Reduce the 23.7m single-use green plastic bags used every year in Cardiff
- Trial new approaches to recycling in flats and houses in multiple occupation
- Trial new methods to restrict general waste collections including collections every three weeks from every two weeks and to two bags a fortnight for those currently presenting bags
- Increase opportunities to recycle at community recycling zones
- Increase the number of materials which can be recycled, including nappies and coffee pots
- Promote reuse and repair to improve recycling
- Deliver more door-to-door recycling education
- Increased same-day street clean and stricter enforcement after collections.
Cllr Wild said: “We have consulted with residents about a new system, and we have undertaken trials.
“We know that there is support across the city to make these changes, but we also appreciate that the changes may inconvenience some.
“However, this strategy provides a pathway for us all to make positive changes for our planet.
“We need everyone to get behind it and support each other on our way to becoming a cleaner, more sustainable city.”
A decision on the proposed recycling strategy will be made at a Cardiff Council cabinet meeting on Wednesday, September 28.
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