Conwy council has announced a trial area of households receiving four-weekly refuse collections has seen a recycling increase of 17%.
Three-weekly refuse bin collections and a trial of four-weekly refuse collections for 10,600 households were introduced throughout the county in September 2016.
According to Jon Eastwood, waste manager at Conwy council, the early indicators are that the service changes have seen savings in the cost of disposal and provided additional income from recycling, which will assist in meeting the council’s wider savings requirements.
Mr Eastwood said: “In a little under 9 months, an additional 900 tonnes of material was placed out to be recycled at the kerbside using the Trolibocs and 2,900 tonnes less waste was collected from refuse wheelie bins in comparison to over the same period last year.”
- A Conwy recycling vehicle at work
- Sorting at the kerbside
- Conwy Trolibocs recycling container system
- A loader at one of Conwy's MRFs
- Materials being sorted at a MRF
- Plastic bottles which have been recycled by Conwy residents
- Operations taking place at a bulking station
- Recycling education officer Alun Jones, with the Trolibocs system and food waste container
Early results show in the four-weekly refuse collection trial area households have increased their recycling by 17%, in comparison to 6% in the three-weekly areas, Mr Eastwood said.
According to Mr Eastwood, refuse has reduced by 30% in the four-weekly areas in comparison to a ‘still impressive’ 20% reduction in the three-weekly areas.
The council’s decision to change refuse collection frequency was made following a year-long review of households’ recycling and waste habits, which found that over half of the items thrown into wheelie bins in Conwy could have been recycled, wasting £1.6m every year.
According to the council, more than 11,000 householders replied, with the majority agreeing that the steps should be taken to reduce waste.
The council said since implementing the service changes, the reaction from the public has been ‘extremely positive’ with residents embracing the ‘waste minimisation challenge’.
All recycling, including paper, cardboard, cans, glass, drinks cartons, batteries, food waste and nappies is collected weekly. Garden waste, textiles and small electrical items are still collected fortnightly.
A full review and evaluation of the collection changes and the trial will be undertaken this autumn.
The four-weekly scheme is the first of its kind in Wales, following Fife council’s decision to trial the timetable in a bid to reduce costs and boost recycling earlier this year (see letsrecycle.com story).
Trolibocs are supplied by MGB Straight which has its head office in Rotherham.