Welwyn Hatfield Council to consider food waste collection in bid to raise recycling rates

PUBLISHED: 11:01 26 November 2018 | UPDATED: 11:01 26 November 2018

Welwyn Hatfield Council will be considering food waste collections. Picture: DANNY LOO

Welwyn Hatfield Council will be considering food waste collections. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2018 Danny Loo Photography - all rights reserved

Food waste collection options will be considered as part of Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council efforts to increase recycling rates.

A report comparing the current recycling performances of Hertfordshire councils reveals Welwyn Hatfield has one of the lowest recycling rates, although it also generates the least waste per household.

In 2017/18, the recycling rate was 43.4 per cent in Welwyn Hatfield, compared with a low of 38.3 per cent in Stevenage and high of 62.4 per cent in Three Rivers.

Total waste in kilograms per household was 788, with Watford (841) the next lowest and Broxbourne (916) the highest.

A Welwyn Hatfield council spokesperson said reduction was “by far the most environmentally friendly way” to manage waste.

“It is really encouraging to see Welwyn Hatfield residents generating the lowest amount of waste in Hertfordshire,” the spokesperson said.

“Our procurement for a new collection contract is well underway.

“As part of this we are looking at ways of increasing our recycling rate, including potential options for food waste collection.”

Recycling fell almost 10 per cent in the 12 months to March this year, whilst residual waste sent to landfill rose by more than 15 per cent.

In April last year, the council introduced a controversial subscription-only garden waste service, charging an annual fee of £35 for brown bin collection and an additional £60 for another bin.

An initial ban on food leftovers being placed with green waste was reversed last November.

The spokesperson said the council promoted waste reduction and recycling “through a wide range of different initiatives” throughout the year,

“(The council) remain committed to supporting people to use less and recycle more,” the spokesperson said.

A comparison of the recycling collection regimes across different boroughs suggests the regime provided by each council only partly influences recycling rates.

The range of materials that can be recycled and the demographics, socioeconomics and behaviour of residents appear to be the key factors, according to the report tabled at an Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting this week.

About 23,5000 households have subscribed to the garden waste service this year, an increase of about 500.

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