We need a more Joined Up recycling system where we can have a common system for residents and greater leverage for monetising recyclable materials. The current devolved system where each area is responsible for going their own way is more akin to a postcode lottery and really depends on the keenness of the local council and cooperation between councils. Fundamentally Residents are very low in the consideration.
We have lived in places that uses Black Wheelie Bins for Rubbish, Green Boxes for Recycling and Food Bins, also Black Bins for recycling, Green for Waste (yes you read that right), as well as other combinations. Current we are back to using bin bags, and food waste bin. This seems such a backwards step because if nothing else the wheelie bins are vermin proof, much tidier and easier to put out, as well as it being easier for the people who do the rubbish collection.
If we had a set system for everyone, then it would be easier to get the best price for the recycling items that are sold, things could be clubbed together or stored as appropriate and we would get the widest effort in recycling. Then also we could look at centralised sorting, increasing the amount of recycling returned which is better for the environment. This does have its drawbacks, but that is mainly around the distribution of funds gained from the recycling.
Now, I know this won’t really happen. Therefore a more sustainable proposal is a national Framework for Recycling. We set a national standard and expectation about what will be recycled and that is facilitated locally. More importantly we make that resident centric not council. If we fundamentally do what we can to make it easier for residents then we will increase recycling and reduce fly-tipping.
PS – Notice not one mention of the B word – We can think about other things too…..