Wednesday, November 15, 2006

More bin problems

I'm afraid I spent yesterday back on the media treadmill about bins.

This time it's as a result of the new system for checking that residents are putting the correct items in their recycling bins.

What will now be happening is that the refuse collectors will be opening and checking the contents of your 'big' recycling bin. If they note any items in the bin that are not recyclable then they won't be emptying it. Instead a sticker will be placed on it telling you that there are items in it that are not recyclable and telling you to ring a council number.

The idea is that you then call this number to be told what it was that shouldn't have been in the bin, offered 'help' with your recycling and then to arrange for someone to come back to empty the bin once you have removed the offending item. If you haven't I assume they still won't take the bin away.

I understand why there has to be a system to check that the right items are placed in the recycling bins. If there is too much 'contamination' in the bins when they arrive at the recycling plant then the loads are rejected and the council has to pay for the whole load to be sent to landfill.

However, again the introduction of the scheme seems to me to have some substantial flaws:
  • Yet again we are introducing a sensible policy using draconian language which is already causing concern to many of our older residents

  • What happens if the item that shouldn't be in the bin wasn't put there by you? The refuse collector can't tell and residents can't protect their bins from passers by putting items in them.

  • Given the problems with the telephone system set up to support the introduction of the recycling scheme, I certainly hope we are going to avoid the same delays and confusion that happened then.

  • Much of the problem lies with foreign students who simply don't understand and frankly don't care about what rubbish goes where. The likelihood of them calling the line, or if they do understanding the problem and what they have to do, is fairly remote I would think. What then happens with the waste that's not being collected?

  • In commmon with the selective collection of green waste bags, we are now going to have waste vehicles driving around making individual collections. That doesn't seem very green to me.

  • And when the council is already £3.65 million overspent for the year it all doesn't sound very cost effective.
Surely a better system would be to simply have a the waste people remove the offending article, put it in the little bin and take the waste. The refuse collector could then place a note through the door of the house it came from informing the residents they had made a mistake and asking them not to repeat it. If they did, after a number of weeks, then this system of not taking the waste could perhaps be used.


Anonymous said...

since re-cycling has been introduced,it seem that it has encouraged the amount of wheelie bins left for weeks on end has increased.Can we get some action PLEASE!

Nick King said...

You're absolutely right! The council's policy of not collecting rubbish from bins that are over flowing or have non recyclable items in them (in the case of the large bins) has resulted in many being left standing for far too long.

This policy is all well and good where the owners of the properties involved either understand or are prepared to cooperate with the system. Where they are not it's causing a real and extremely unpleasant problem.

If you can identify for me where the problem you have noticed is, I can attempt to get it sorted out for you.

Let's also hope for the right result next May when a more realistic and cooperative approach can be introduced.

Anonymous said...

the increase this has put on my water bill having to clean out tins and bottles is quite a shock.And the amount of wheelie bins leftt on the pavement by residents has increased making the area downgraded