Sefton Council’s Lib Dem Cabinet Member Environmental has responded to recent Government announcement of £250m Fund for “weekly bin collections”
Last week the Government announced a £250 million Fund to help local authorities in England maintain weekly bin collections.
Sefton’s Cabinet Member – Environmental, Cllr Simon Shaw is hopeful that Sefton Council will be eligible for a share of the Fund.
He particularly welcomed the comments of Caroline Spelman, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, who said that “This new fund will help councils whose residents want their rubbish collected more frequently to reinstate weekly bin rounds for smelly waste.”
Cllr Shaw said: “Locally we have maintained a weekly collection of smelly waste through the food waste collection service. From the fairly limited information available so far, that seems to be exactly the sort of service which the Government is proposing to support through this Fund. But, as always, the devil is in the detail.”
“It won’t mean an enormous financial benefit, as the £250 million is spread over 5 years. Sefton’s share of that could be something like £1.5 million – that’s £300,000 per year.”
“It certainly isn’t enough to cover the cost of changing to collecting general waste every week, despite what some misleading recent newspaper headlines may have said.”
“In fact, a while ago Sefton officers worked out how much extra it would cost to switch from the present AWC system to emptying the grey wheelie bins each week. It came out at more than 10 times the amount the Government would give us.”
“However, if this money can be used by Sefton Council to develop an even better weekly food waste collection service then that’s obviously good news. Around 50% of local households already use that service, but it would be great to get that figure even higher.”
Some key facts:
• Sefton operates an AWC (Alternating Weekly Collection) refuse collection system for most of the Borough. For most of the year grey wheelie bins (“residual” waste) are emptied one week, and green wheelie bins (compostable garden waste) are emptied the next week. Around Christmas, grey bins are emptied every week.
• In addition Sefton provides a weekly food waste collection service. In 2010/11 it collected 3,000 tonnes of food waste. 50% of households have opted in to this service, and it is hoped this proportion will rise further.
• Recyclable waste (“green box” i.e. paper, bottles and cans) are collected each week.
• In 2004/5 Sefton collected 16,500 tonnes of recyclable materials.
• In 2010/11 it collected 41,000 tonnes of recyclable material via weekly recycling (glass, tin, paper and food waste), bring banks, and AWC Green Bin collections.
• 20,000 tonnes of garden (green) waste were collected in 2010/11.
• Sefton is the only authority in Merseyside to offer a weekly recycling collection service (green box, food waste caddy and paper).