Shropshire approves £3m plans for extra recycling bin

Shropshire households can now request an additional 240l wheelie bin for recycling after councillors approved an investment of almost £3 million to fund the extra containers.

Shropshire's Cllr Ian Nellins with one of the new bins (picture: Shropshire council)

The optional and free bins will replace existing black recycling boxes for cans, glass, and plastic.

Shropshire council’s cabinet agreed the plans in July 2021 and funding was approved at a meeting of the full council yesterday (13 January 2022).

With the council assuming that just more than 140,000 households (96.7% of the eligible households in the county) will request a bin, the total cost of providing the containers would be £2.93m.

Ian Nellins, Shropshire council’s cabinet member with responsibility for waste and recycling, said: “I’m delighted that council has agreed to fund the rollout of the additional bin and that people are now able to order theirs.

“The provision of a bin for recycling is a direct response to residents’ comments and requests – and is a pledge we made in our election manifesto last year.

“It’s clear that it’s something that many people want, and it’s something that will help us to boost the amount of waste that is recycled in Shropshire.”

Some Shropshire households may not want a bin due to the layout of their housing or the lack of storage space, the council says.

These residents can continue to use their existing waste containers, as can those residents who prefer to use the boxes.

240l bins

The new bins will be the same size as those in standard use in Shropshire for general and garden waste.

Shropshire says the new, larger bins will help free up capacity at Veolia’s Battlefield EfW plant (pictured) as residents put less waste in their residual bins

They will be a different colour to differentiate them from the other bins in use.

According to council minutes, each bin will cost £17.65, while delivery and “supervision” will come to £2.48 and 25p respectively.

Should the new recycling bins result in a change in residents’ behaviour, the council says there would be a “financial benefit” of approximately £84,000 for every 1,000 tonnes of waste diverted from the residual to the recycling bin.

The benefit would be achieved “primarily” through the sale of the capacity at Veolia’s Battlefield energy from waste (EfW) plant, which would be freed up by reducing the amount of residual waste collected from the kerbside.

Around 2,500 tonnes of metal are recovered from the incineration process bottom ash at the plant after processing, according to the minutes, indicating that Shropshire residents are still putting recyclable material in the residual bin.

Shropshire

Representing an estimated population of nearly 320,000, Shropshire council had a household waste recycling rate of 53.3% in the 2020/21 financial year.

Waste management company Veolia collects waste on behalf of the council under a 27-year contract first signed in 2007.

Waste is currently collected fortnightly in two streams: a paper and card mixture using a blue bag and a plastic, glass, and metal mixture using 55 litre boxes.

Generally, the council says, there are two boxes per household, but more are provided if required, at no extra cost to the resident.

In 2020/21, Veolia collected 17,000 tonnes of plastics, glass, and metals from the kerbside in the Shropshire council area.

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