East Devon District council is preparing to complete the roll-out of its new recycling and waste scheme – which includes a three-weekly residual waste collection service – to a further 50,000 households across the borough.
The new recycling and waste service, launched by the council in partnership with its waste contractor Suez in February, has seen grey bin residual waste collection move from a fortnightly to a three-weekly schedule at around 16,700 households in Exmouth.
Residents at the district’s remaining households – which are still receiving a fortnightly residual waste service, are now being prepared for the changeover to the new regime, which will begin next month (June).
Leaflets are being sent out this week to all households in the rest of East Devon – the second and final phase of the rollout – giving information about the start date of the new service, a calendar of collection days for weekly recycling and food waste along with dates for waste collections.
Mark Williams, East Devon district council’s chief executive, said: “The new service will make it easier for our residents to recycle more and in order for us to achieve this we have had to make some major changes to our usual collection routes. This has meant some day and week changes to collections for some of our residents which may take a while to get used to.
“We have meticulously planned the new service over the last fourteen months but any change to a service as important as recycling and waste involving more than 51,000 households, 260 blocks of flats, and thousands of streets will bring some teething problems at the start. We have worked hard with our contractors Suez to minimise any disruption, but there will inevitably be a small number of issues initially as everyone gets used to the changes.
“Our letters contain information specific to each household and I would urge residents to read them carefully, keep them to hand and please use them to help you separate recycling in to the correct containers. We’re here to help and if you need assistance, please contact us.”
The council claims that following the switch householders will have access to a more comprehensive weekly recycling service, as cardboard, mixed plastics and Tetra Paks will be collected alongside the existing range of items that can be recycled, including glass, plastic bottles, cans and paper.
Food waste is also collected on a weekly basis, whilst the council has partnered with a not-for-proift organisation, Otter Rotters, to offer a pay-per-use garden waste collection service.
According to the council, provisional findings show that since the service was launched in Exmouth, recycling and composting rates in the town has risen from 44%, to 59% in the first six weeks of the new scheme.
Suez was awarded a seven-year waste and recycling collection contract with East Devon in March 2016 (see letsrecycle.com story).