The Royal Borough of Greenwich Council says it has seen a 10.7% drop in the amount of recycling being rejected, when it is first sorted, following the launch of its new contamination policy last November.
As part of the Council’s push towards “zero waste”, from 14 November 2022, its waste crews stopped collecting green and blue top bins containing incorrect items.
If the Council’s waste crew found the wrong item(s) in a bin, they placed a tag on the bin and the resident received a letter explaining that the item should be removed. If a bin is contaminated three times within three months, the bin is then removed permanently.
The Council says its relevant waste advisors have also been attending affected properties to help residents identify the items they need to remove.
Since the new policy began, over 60% of all residents who had one of their recycling bins tagged, removed the incorrect item and have not gone on to contaminate their bin again, the Council says.
The amount of recycling being rejected when it’s first sorted has decreased from 14.5% in November to 3.8% in December 2022.
From 27 February, the Council says general waste wheelie bins will also be collected every two weeks and extra bags that aren’t contained within the blacktop wheelie bin won’t be collected, the Council says.
Commenting on the announcement, Cllr Averil Lekau, Cabinet Member for Climate Change, Environment and Transport, said: “Thanks to the efforts of our residents to recycle effectively, the amount of recycling being rejected when it’s first sorted has decreased from 14.5% in November to 3.8% in December 2022.
“This is brilliant news – by putting the right thing in the right bin, together we’re ensuring that more of our waste is recycled and less is being incinerated as a result. By recycling more of our household waste there will be more room in our blacktop bins, which will be collected every two weeks from 27 February.
“If you’re still unsure of what should go into your green, blue and blacktop wheelie bins, you can find up-to-date information on our website.”