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New blue bins for glass recycling approved

At their meeting today (Thursday 3 September), Sefton Council’s Cabinet approved the procurement of new wheelie bins for glass recycling.

With the Government requiring some items of recycling waste to be collected separately as part of its new Environment Bill, Sefton Council is planning new, separate glass collections. This is due to the weight of glass collected, which is around 7,000 tonnes annually. Collecting glass separately produces much higher quality material which can be used for closed loop recycling, and used for re-melt rather than aggregate, making it infinitely recyclable into new glass jars and bottles.

The quality of the other materials (paper, cardboard and tin cans) collected in brown bins will also be much higher delivering better quality material for recycling, this is vital in improving recycling in the UK, allowing it to be reprocessed in local facilities.

Purchasing 100,000 new, blue wheelie bins will be required to achieve this plan. The cost of this and the updating of the cleansing vehicle fleet will be offset by £400,000 of recycling income generated annually over 10 years from the Merseyside Recycling & Waste Authority, as a result of Sefton Council removing glass from its general recycling collections.

Peter Moore, Sefton Council’s Head of Highways and Public Protection, said: “This change to collecting glass recycling items will make a positive contribution to Sefton’s Climate Change Strategy as well as to the Region’s environmental impact.

“I realise it will mean we are asking residents to separate out their glass items from other recycling but residents across the Borough have been supportive of recycling and our climate change agenda, particularly as it as a way of us keeping down costs too.”

In its Environment Bill, which could become law in late 2020, the Government is asking for one ‘core’ item of recycling to be collected separately. Having reviewed the core items, due to weight of the product, the ease with which it can be separated and the potential for generating income, Sefton proposed removing glass from the current brown bin collection.

The new bins will be procured through a competitive process for delivery in February and March next year. Separate glass recycling collections would start in March and April.

Mr Moore added: “This fits well with other actions we are taking to improve waste storage, collection and recycling. This Autumn we will be providing wheeled bins to approximately 5000 houses that currently rely on black bin bag collections. and, in early 2021 European-style, communal bins to approximately 5000 others where a wheeled bin isn’t practical.”

Peter Moore also thanked Sefton Council’s cleansing teams whom he said had made a ‘sterling effort’ to provide the Borough’s residents with regular refuse collections throughout the coronavirus pandemic.