One of the UK’s leading waste and resource management companies, Veolia, has called for “a pragmatic approach to waste collection” and for a nationwide policy of “no more unnecessary bins”.
Veolia has responded to the EU’s revised Waste Framework Directive, which says that each waste collection authority must have separate collections for all material streams: paper, plastic, metal, glass etc, wherever it is “technically, environmentally and economically practicable (TEEP)” to do so. It claims that some reprocessors are attempting to implement measure that could lead to as many as 19 separate bins on UK doorsteps.
These materials collections are inn addition to food, gardening or organic waste and the non-recyclable or “black bag” waste.
Richard Kirkman, Veolia’s technical director, said: “Veolia is as committed to recycling as the EU, it’s our business, but we want to ensure the new EU laws are viable for the public and practical for residents. Some reprocessors are trying to put measures in place that could cause a rise of up to 19 bins on UK doorsteps! With modern technology, paper, metal and plastic can all be separated post-collection to the required standard. The public are very supportive of recycling, but we must make it easy for them.”
69% Say Four Bins Is Enough
In support for its rallying cry of “no more unnecessary bins”, Veolia has highlighted the findings of a new YouGov survey. Of more than 2,500 adults, 69% of the British public think households shouldn’t be expected to separate their rubbish into more than four bins, while only 12% consider six or more bins reasonable. Sixty percent already separate out glass and a further 35% are willing to do so; 55% separate out organic waste and a further 36% are willing to do so.
The survey does show an already high level of commitment to recycling, with 94% of people recognising its important; with 92% separating out their recyclable waste. The respondents were also generally supportive of higher EU targets (it recently proposed an increase from 50% by 2020 to 70% by 2030) with more than a third saying that the current target was too low, and only 8% saying it was too high.
However, just last month for example, Biffa successfully won the Epping Forest recycling and waste contract and, as reported by the CIWM Journal Online, and following a TEEP assessment will continue with a twin stream recycling collection.