Newham to start weekly recycling collections

Redbridge Council is hosting a series of online workshops to give people tips on recycling.

Newham is changing the way it recycles. - Credit: PA

Recycling is to be collected once a week under town hall proposals aimed at making the borough more environmentally friendly.

At a meeting on Tuesday (April 13), Newham Council cabinet members voted for a raft of changes expected to increase the amount of waste which is recycled.

Councillor James Asser, cabinet member for environment, highways and sustainable transport, said: "We are very keen to drive up our recycling rate.

"We are very keen to help residents in terms of their ambition to recycle more and very keen to make this part of our wider environmental agenda."

Among the proposals, recycling collected from homes - apart from those above shops - moves from fortnightly to weekly.


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Glass, plastic pots, tubs, trays, aerosols and tin foil are to be added to the list of items which can be recycled when the weekly service is introduced.

An average of 17 per cent of items Newham sent for recycling in 2019-20 were not recyclable.

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But under the plans, which will be phased in, crews will no longer collect bins which contain things that could cause the recycling to be rejected at processing centres.

Every bin which is not up to scratch will be labelled with details about why it wasn't taken, the common incorrect items found and an instruction to take out non-recyclables before the next collection.

Recycling bins will also have to be left at the boundary of each property to make it easier for crews to collect.

An assisted collection service for anyone who would struggle to move their bin is due to be set up under the scheme.

Cllr James Asser. Picture: LBN

Cllr James Asser. - Credit: LBN

Cllr Asser said the council did not receive a single complaint when the proposals were trialled between September and December.

"By the end of this process, we will have increased the amount of recycling by a huge amount," he added. 

Newham is the second-lowest performing borough nationwide when it comes to recycling, a council report shows.

Recycling in 2018/19 was 17pc, compared to the national average of 45pc and London average of 33pc.

Under a 25-year PFI contract, Newham has to deliver all recycling to the East London Waste Authority (ELWA), which covers four east London boroughs.

Newham puts its low performance down to population density and movement, deprivation and the ELWA contract which means it costs the local authority more to dispose of recycling.

An exact start date for the new collection schedule was not specified in the Newham Council report on the plans.

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