16 August 2012

Councils target post-Olympics glass for recycling

A number of councils across the UK are stepping up their glass recycling efforts, following the success of the Olympics, in a bid to take advantage of the extra material available.

Bedford borough, Cherwell district and Plymouth city councils have all rolled out extra glass recycling facilities and services to residents to help reduce the amount of glass going to landfill and energy recovery.

Last year Plymouth collected 3,156 tonnes of glass through its 117 bring banks

Last year Plymouth collected 3,156 tonnes of glass through its 117 bring banks

In Plymouth 15,000 homes are set to take part in a kerbside glass collection pilot. From September, residents in the pilot area will be able to put their glass containers in their existing recycling bags or bins.

Recycling in Plymouth is collected commingled on a fortnightly basis and already includes paper, cardboard, plastics and cans. The pilot will enhance the councils existing glass recycling facilities for residents which includes 117 bottle banks across the city, from which 3,156 tonnes of glass was collected last year.

Right direction

Commenting on the service, Councillor Brian Vincent, cabinet member for the environment at Plymouth, said: Weve tried to keep this as simple as possible to encourage people to get involved. No extra containers are needed. All were asking people to do is to put empty, clean glass bottles and jars into their existing recycling bin or bag, which will be collected on their usual day every fortnight.

“We need to increase recycling rates as part of our commitment to a greener Plymouth and this new trial is a step in the right direction. We would urge those who are not part of the scheme to continue with their efforts to recycle their glass by using the citys existing facilities.

The trial in Plymouth covers one collection round, which includes a cross-section of neighbourhoods. The council said the pilot will help it to iron out any potential issues before it rolls the service out city-wide.


Meanwhile Cherwell district council in Oxfordshire is handing out free reusable bags to residents to help them collect their glass containers following the celebration of a hugely successful Olympics.

Cherwell council is offering residents free reusable glass recycling bags

Cherwell council is offering residents free reusable glass recycling bags

Residents will be able to pick the bags up from stands at the councils offices or leisure centres and libraries in Banbury, Bicester and Kidlington.

At present, Cherwell district council does not collect glass as part of its kerbside service, which consists of an alternately weekly collection of commingled dry recyclables, residual waste and green waste.

Commenting on the bags, Councillor Nigel Morris, Cherwells lead member for clean and green, said: As we do not collect glass from homes, we need to make it as easy as possible for residents to recycle them at one of our 90-plus recycling sites.

Sending it to landfill is clearly bad for the environment especially when glass is so easy to recycle, and when kept separate is worth four times more than when its mixed. I would urge everyone to pick up a bag and use it to take their bottles to the nearest recycling bank, which for most should be just a stones throw away.


Bedford borough council is also taking advantage of the increase in glass containers available by rolling out extra containers at the busiest bring banks in the borough.

Extra containers are now available at Sainsburys in Clapham and Kempston, Tescos in Goldington and Kingsbrook, and Avon Drive Shops in Brickhill.

Mayor of Bedford Borough, Dave Hodgson, said: We are committed to continuing to improve waste and recycling services in the borough. We hope that these additional facilities will make glass recycling more convenient for residents, which will in turn help to increase the councils recycling rate and reduce the amount of glass needlessly going to landfill.

Unlike other materials, glass is infinitely recyclable and can be used to make new containers or be put into aggregates for use in construction.

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