9 December 2016

Cash for wheelie bins will increase recycling

Councillors have approved £1.1m of spending to increase recycling rates in Brighton & Hove.

The money will be used to issue recycling wheelie bins to 60,000 households. They will go to any property considered suitable after a street-by-street assessment.

The bins proved popular in a trial last year involving 4000 homes in Hangleton and South Portslade, where recycling rates jumped by four per cent. 

In October the council’s environment committee approved the full roll-out in principle.  The powerful policy, resources and growth committee last night (December 8 2016) approved the funding, authorising officials to seek a single supplier.

An exact timescale for the rollout has yet to be fixed but it is expected around spring 2017. The new bins would be used to recycle cans, aerosols, card, paper and plastic bottles.  Glass and batteries would still be separated and left in a black box. 

In the trial, households recycled around 1.1 kg more waste per fortnight. The amount of general household waste collected decreased by an average of 1.2kg. More than 95 per cent of residents taking part in the trial told the council that using wheelie bins made it easier to recycle.

During the trial, council officers received dozens of inquiries from residents living in other areas of the city, asking for recycling wheelie bins.

Committee member and deputy council leader Cllr Gill Mitchell said:  “We must increase our recycling rates and the trial strongly suggests this will help.  Our surveying showed people really appreciate the new bins.  They store more material and are easier for residents and staff to shift about. We want to make recycling more user-friendly and explain to people its environmental benefits and how it saves taxpayers’ money.”

Residents will be issued with 240 litre wheelie bins - equivalent of five black boxes – plus a box for glass. Any properties unsuitable for a wheelie bin would continue with current arrangements. The collection frequency would be fortnightly – the same as for black boxes.