Burnley council is considering proposals to introduce wheeled bins to replace sacks and boxes for the collection of recyclable materials for around 22,000 households.
The proposal follows a review of the borough’s waste collection services following comments from residents. Spillages and limits on recycling capacity were among the concerns raised by residents, the council said, despite the authority having acknowledged that the current system is ‘regarded as an efficient method for frequent collections’.
Currently recycling is collected fortnightly in 55l containers for glass, cans and plastics and white sacks for paper and card. The plans would see around 20,000 homes, which have been deemed not suitable for wheeled bins continue with this system.
Households moving to the new system would receive two 240-litre wheeled bins under the new system – one for glass, cans and plastic and one for paper and card, which would be collected on a four-weekly basis.
Procurement of the new containers is expected to cost a total of £720,000 to the council. It is hoped that the new system could also help boost the council’s recycling and composting rate from its current 32.8% level.
Delivered by the council’s collection contractor Urbaser, the new service would see existing collections for household residual waste, collected via a claret wheeled bin and garden waste will continue to be collected fortnightly.
The report will be discussed at scrutiny committee on 17 June before going to the executive for a decision on 18 June.
“Our aim has been to find a ‘best fit’ system that works in the best way possible for our residents overall. We also want to make recycling easier for our residents and continue to improve the cleanliness of our streets.”Cllr Cosima Towneley
Councillor Cosima Towneley, the council’s executive member for community and environmental services, said: “The review looked at the way we collect recycling and whether the system could be improved by adopting a wheelie bin system instead and, if so, how we would do that.
“It quickly became clear that there isn’t a simple answer as different households have different circumstances. Some houses have space for wheelie bins, others don’t. Some people want to see wheelie bins introduced, others are happy with the current system.
“Our aim has been to find a ‘best fit’ system that works in the best way possible for our residents overall. We also want to make recycling easier for our residents and continue to improve the cleanliness of our streets.”
Cllr Towneley said that the council worked with its contractor Urbaser on the proposals to look at different rounds across the borough.
She added: “We identified the areas where households generally had storage space and wheelie bins would work best, and those areas where, for example, there are only small back yards where the bin and bag system provides the flexibility those residents find works for them.
“If the proposals are agreed we will work with residents to make sure they know exactly which system they are using, how to collect recyclable rubbish, and when it will be collected. The aim would be to make any changes as efficient and seamless as possible.
“We are confident the new system will improve the way we collect recyclable materials, encourage residents to recycle more and help improve the cleanliness of our streets.”