By Daniel Wood
Kirklees Council is debating how the public’s household waste and recycling could be dealt with in the future.
Chiefs are set to ask the public for their ideas and inputs on the future of bin collection and recycling in the borough going forward.
The changes could result in a return of fortnightly household glass collections and the introduction of special ‘caddies’ for food waste, which will be collected weekly.
As many as four separate bins could be implemented per household, from next year.
The councils current cut-price waste contract is coming closer to expiry and they are aiming to run a virtual engagement over the matter.
Senior councillor Naheed Mather, the council’s Cabinet Member for Greener Kirklees, said: “We want Kirklees to be a place where waste is valued as a resource through re-use, recycling and recovery.
“To achieve this, we all need to take responsibility for the waste we generate and make the best decisions on what to do with it.”
The national average of recycling rate is 44% and Kirklees’ recycling rate was only 24% in 2018/19, which suggests that people in the borough are not doing enough to allow that figure to rise.
That figure had decreased 3% from the year prior and was a 6% drop on 2016/17 figures.
However, Kirklees Council has stressed that those figures do not reflect the true work on recycling done in the borough, as most waste in Kirklees is burnt in the incinerator at Hillhouse, which turns waste into electricity.
There has been a problem with recycling in Kirklees since it made a deal with French-owned firm Suez, which is set to expire in 2023.
The contract is very restrictive, so many recyclable items that should not go to landfill are banned from green bins. This includes margarine tubs, yoghurt pots, fruit juice/ milk tetra packs, plastic food containers from ready meals/ fruit, the lids from plastic bottles and glass.
Its Zero Waste to Landfill vision will aim to tackle the climate emergency and demonstrate the council’s commitment to recycling.
A grey (rubbish), green (recycling) and brown (garden waste) bin are already given to each household and a new purple bin would be given, as part of the Zero Waste to Landfill vision, for glass items.
Alternatively, residents can choose to use a “caddy”, which would sit on top of green bins and inside grey bins.
Some households might not have space for a further bin, so a larger communal bin would be given to specific areas to share with neighbours.
The council have promised that anything it can’t recycle will still be collected and used to produce energy.
Yoghurt pots have been chosen for special attention, as they are made from polystyrene that it difficult to recycle and are often rejected by recycling companies.
To reduce this issue, residents are urged to buy larger tubs to reduce the amount thrown away.