Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Fortnightly collections

With the increase in recycling and recycling collections, the city plans to move to fortnightly collections from individual green bins in September.

This affects 50% of homes in Edinburgh - ie those with an individual green bin.  There will also be changes in collection days as rounds are re-routed to make them more efficient.  To make better use of the collection vehicles there will be more double shifts; in other words collections will be made later in the day and in the evenings.(In tenement and other appropriate areas there will continue to be the large street bins.)


Comment:  Overall this should save considerable sums for the council tax payer - though many will be concerned about the length of time rubbish lies in the green bins.  That is partly offset by the introduction of food waste collections, already in place in many areas.  Cans, glass, paper and cardboard are already collected on alternative fortnights.

On a more general note these changes are driven (one might even say limited) by Scottish Government and EU legislation - hefty landfill taxes and the requirement to recycle food waste.

For sure, recycling is a good thing, but it is difficult to see how the kerbside separation, with the extra collection journeys and the inconvenience and requirements for household space for separate receptacles, is efficient.  That is especially so when separation technology (mechanical sorting to enable recycling at the depot) is much more effective than it once was.

Certainly the quality of the recycled end product will be higher with kerbside separation, but that seems to be more than offset by the number of collection vehicles touring our streets and other downsides. For example, I now have four external bins (green, garden, blue, red bins) and at least six separate internal bins (food waste, envelopes, paper (2), cardboard/glass, plastics and residual waste).  Help!

PS for more about Edinburgh Council recycling and a contact number for enquires or collection issues, see here.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

5 external bins? (External Food waste plus internal bucket).

On another note: how long is the South Edinburgh 20mph "trial" supposed to last/when is it due to be reviewed?

I trust the Council will take the following evidence into account:

http://www.iam.org.uk/news/latest-news/1087-road-deaths-and-serious-injuries-up-road-safety-spending-down

http://www.abd.org.uk/pr/787.htm

"Based on the latest accident figures published by the Department for Transport and analysed by the IAM, those areas that have introduced 20MPH zones and speed humps have worse Killed and Seriously Injured (KSI) figures than those which have not."

Cameron Rose said...

Interesting IAM figures. The Scottish figures are here: http://www.transportscotland.gov.uk/news/Key-Reported-Road-Casualties-Scotland-2011# though not directly comparable as the IAM figures have calculated the rates on the basis of distance travelled. The Scottish figures are raw - and show a significant drop.

All in all I think the jutry is still out on the 20mph zone. We need to see the actual stats. Nonetheless the AIM comments on Portsmouth (significant increase) are interesting as the 20mph zone there was much quoted in the reasoning for introducing the Edinburgh 20mph experiment.

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