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Stroud District Council residents top national recycling charts

Published: Friday, 14 December, 2018

Stroud District Council residents are the best in England at not throwing away rubbish to landfill or incineration and the council has been praised by Government chiefs for its ‘comprehensive’ recycling service.

Since Stroud District Council radically changed the way waste is collected in 2016, recycling rates have shot up and the amount of residual waste thrown away has plummeted.

"I am really pleased with the figures, which are testament to the way residents have embraced the new collection regime and I know that we can perform even better in future," said Environment Committee Chair Simon Pickering (Green, Slade).

"The key to improvement now is for everyone to be thinking about buying less in the first place, and disposing of even less."

The Department for Food Environment and Rural Affairs (Defra) figures for 2017/18 show that of all local councils in England, Stroud disposes of the least amount of residual waste to landfill/incineration – an average of 258.6kg per household per year.

The figures also show that SDC is the highest performing council for recycling in the south west and has experienced the largest increase in ‘household waste’ recycling rates – an impressive 61 per cent, up by 15 per cent.

Committee Vice Chair Councillor George Butcher (Liberal Democrat, Wotton-under-Edge) said: “It’s great to see Stroud District Council and our residents at the forefront of action to improve recycling rates and making inroads on climate change. We can do more of course, and we are up for that challenge.”

England’s annual local authority waste recycling statistics for 2017/2018 show the recycling rate for waste from households in England in 2017 was 45.2%, up from 44.9% in 2016. In 2000, the household waste recycling rate was 11%. Just 12.5% of all local authority waste was disposed to landfill in 2017/18, down by 0.9 million tonnes or 22% to 3.2 million tonnes. This compares to 15.7% of all local authority waste disposed to landfill in 2016/17.

Committee member Councillor Paul Denney (Labour, Cam West) said: “The latest recycling figures are truly fantastic and much credit should go to all at SDC and the staff at collection contractor UBICO.

"It should be noted however that this success has been hard won at no little cost. So as we head into the Christmas period we must remember the 3 R's: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. Recycling should be the last resort – it’s only dealing with the problem, it’s not the long term solution.

"And at this time of year I would especially urge people to really think about how much food you need to buy this Christmas and remember that not all food waste needs to go in the food waste caddy – vegetable peelings can still go in garden compost bins.”

A Defra spokesperson said: “It is encouraging to see the recycling rate rising in England. People are producing less waste, less of that waste is being sent to landfill, and separate food waste collections are increasing.

“More councils than ever are now recycling over half of all waste and the increases reported by councils such as Sutton, Stroud and Colchester show what can be achieved by offering residents a comprehensive waste collection service.

“Our upcoming Resources and Waste Strategy will set out plans to make sure we continue to reduce avoidable waste and recycle more.

“The Government will shortly release a renewed strategy on resources and waste that looks ahead at opportunities outside the EU. This will set out our direction of travel on recycling and our commitment to improving the quantity and quality of what we recycle.”

*Don’t forget that over Christmas and New Year, some waste and recycling rounds will not be made on their usual days, and residents can sign up for a Christmas tree recycling service which will benefit a local charity.

If your collection would be on:

Tuesday December 25, it will be collected earlier on Monday December 24.

Wednesday December 26, it will be collected on Saturday December 29.

Tuesday January 1, it will be collected on Saturday January 5.

And registrations are now open the Christmas tree doorstep collection scheme which will benefit Minchinhampton-based hospice charity Longfield. Collections can be made from homes, businesses, schools, pubs and hotels, and must be registered on or before 6pm on Sunday 6th January.

Volunteers will collect trees from Thursday 10th January until Sunday 13th January. Anyone without internet access who wishes to arrange a collection can do so by calling Longfield on 01453 886 868.

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