Out of the 46 local authorities that applied and received grants from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) for reward recycling schemes, only 27 have implemented an initiative so far, according to Greenredeem.
As the recycling incentives company reveals research into the impact of incentive schemes, it says 19 local authorities have chosen to sit on their grants, rather than investing in incentive schemes that are “not yet proven”.
In 2014 the DCLG made a fund of £5m available to councils that collect residual waste weekly so they could incentivise householders to recycle more.
Greenredeem says that its analysis shows long-term investments in incentives will yield results, while “quick-win” solutions fail to deliver.
It says rewards schemes that offer “quick-win” incentives have struggled to achieve the results that Greenredeem’s partners have reported, as they fail to maintain the conversation with participants on a regular, one-on-one level.
“Since Recyclebank (now Greenredeem) first launched in 2009, a number of schemes have followed suit, attempting to mirror the success. Unfortunately, many of these schemes have failed because they have cherry-picked which incentives they offer”
Some local authorities that take on the pressure of developing their own incentive schemes have struggled to achieve the recycling growth rates they were aiming for, it says.
The company analysed individual recycling behaviour of more than 2m kerbside collections over two years.
The results show that Greenredeem members recycled twice as much and twice as often as non-members, with members recycling an average of 19.35kg every time they put their recycling out for kerbside collection.
Members also put their recycling out more frequently – 2.5 times per month – while non-members recycle an average of 9.01kg, 1.29 times per month.
As well as rewarding members through discounts and offers, Greenredeem also educates and motivates communities to collaborate on recycling projects, encouraging members to reuse and reduce.
Rob Crumbie, director of marketing and communications at Greenredeem said: “For local authorities to make informed decisions, a clear distinction must be made between schemes that attempt to deliver quick-win results and those that will drive sustainable behaviour change.
“Creating communities and bringing people together works, supported and underpinned by a communications platform that makes recycling and reuse part of the everyday. There is no need for local authorities to attempt to reinvent the wheel by going it alone. To hit recycling targets, they need to look to proven methods of incentivising sustainable behaviour changes.
“Since Recyclebank (now Greenredeem) first launched in 2009, a number of schemes have followed suit, attempting to mirror the success. Unfortunately, many of these schemes have failed because they have cherry-picked which incentives they offer, without investing the time and effort needed to build relationships with communities and become integral to people’s everyday lives.”