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Council considers three or four-weekly bin collections

15 Jan 2024 3 minute read
Caerphilly bin lorry. Image: CCBC

Nicholas Thomas Local Democracy Reporter

Three or four-weekly bin collections could be solutions to a council’s ailing recycling rates, the council believes.

A new report shows that Caerphilly Council may cut collection rounds for non-recyclable waste, which is currently picked up every fortnight.

Residents may also be given new containers for recyclable materials, separating paper, cans and food waste.

Fines

The council estimates it will be liable for fines of around £2 million annually if it fails to hit new Welsh Government recycling targets.

Writing in the council’s new draft Waste and Recycling Strategy, Chris Morgan, the cabinet member for waste, said Caerphilly’s performance had “declined” in recent years, meaning there was “a shift required in service delivery and behaviour”.

Last year, Caerphilly recorded a recycling performance of 60.76%, well below the national 64% target and among the worst rates of all Welsh council areas.

That national target is due to rise to 70% this year, leaving the council in a precarious position if it fails to improve on its current performance.

Worst offenders

Caerphilly produces “one of the highest levels of residual waste per person in Wales”, Cllr Morgan noted in the draft report.

“Quick wins” introduced in 2023 have had a positive impact, but on their own those measures – such as free food caddy bags, and more education for residents – will leave Caerphilly just short of the 70% target, according to the council report.

The council predicts cutting bin collections to three-weekly or even four-weekly rounds will remove the final obstacle in its way.

Collections of recyclable materials will continue on a more regular basis, even if residual (non-recyclable) waste rounds are cut, and a new sorting policy could come into force.

According to the draft waste strategy, “residents will be provided with separate containers for plastic and cans, glass, and paper and card, which will be collected weekly”.

“Food waste will continue to be collected weekly and garden waste will be collected fortnightly and seasonally”, the report reads.

There would also be weekly collections of hygienic products.

Consultation

Any new changes to bin collections will only be made after a public consultation, which is likely to open in February.

“It is clear that we cannot make the proposed changes alone and a collective effort is required,” the council said in its report. “It is important that residents, and our communities, have the opportunity to shape proposals.”

Even if the council manages to hit that 70% recycling target and avoid future fines, the implementation of its new waste strategy will cost the local authority an estimated £2.37m over the next two years.

A “significant increase in staff levels” is also likely.


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Tony
Tony
1 month ago

Well, after initial grumblings from a small but vocal group who resist change, in Conwy, this is working very well!

Victor Waggett
Victor Waggett
1 month ago

This is ridiculous. Councils keep cutting services but still put the rates up . What the hell are we paying for.

NewYorker
NewYorker
1 month ago
Reply to  Victor Waggett

Inflated salaries and WFH.

Frank
Frank
1 month ago
Reply to  Victor Waggett

We are paying for increases in their already generous wages and pensions and for incompetence.

Frank
Frank
1 month ago

If refuse collections are currently every fortnight and the council is considering 3 or even 4 weekly ones instead what are the refuse staff going to be doing on the days they no longer collect? Are they going to be sitting down doing absolutely nothing or will there be redundancies?

RCB
RCB
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

There are lots of routes on a cycle so they’d still be working to cover all the routes. Plus the routes would change to incorporate larger volumes of waste being collected on a less frequent basis. The article mentions taking on more staff not less.

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