Leeds says WOW to recycling figures

Recent record breaking recycling figures have been broken yet again, showing that Leeds is winning the ‘war on waste’ (WOW).

With the ongoing help of residents, 48% of Leeds’ household rubbish was recycled in July 2012 – the city’s highest ever recycling rate. Compared to July last year, 8,000tonnes less waste was sent to landfill.

Nearly half of all household waste collected is now a valuable resource being converted into useful products.

Leeds City Council collects two million bins each month and 99.9% of these are collected on time.

To demonstrate its commitment to maintaining these high standards, Leeds City Council is signing up to a national waste collection commitment.

Developed by WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme) and the Local Government Association (LGA), the waste collection commitment ensures residents in Leeds receive a waste and recycling collection service which is value for money and meets their needs.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for the environment, said:
"48% recycling is a phenomenal result. This underlines the tremendous hard work which is being put in by staff in the department and also the real desire from residents to work with us and recycle.

“We've know for years that we shouldn’t be burying waste. The annual landfill tax bill is set to increase by £1.5 million a year, so the war on waste is one we can ill afford to lose financially or environmentally, and needs the ongoing partnership between the public and the council.

“By signing this commitment we’re reinforcing the message to our residents that we’re dedicated to providing them with a waste and recycling collection service that’s right for them. The commitment makes it clear what residents can expect and we look forward to working with them on a range of improvements which will make the service even better in the future.”

The waste collection commitment is based on research into what people like and dislike about their existing services and issues that are important to them. This includes regular and reliable collections and clean streets after collections.

In order for the commitment to be a success and to make the most of current waste and recycling services in Leeds, residents are asked to:

1. Put bins out for collection by 7am on the scheduled collection day.

2. Return your bin to your property after collection.

3. Only put paper, cardboard, cans, aerosols and plastic bottles in the green bin for recycling.

4. Think about whether items you no longer have use for really are waste or could be passed on to someone else.

More information on the collection services available in Leeds can be found at www.leeds.gov.uk or by calling 0113 222 4406.

More information on the waste collection commitment can be found at www.wrap.org.uk.

Notes to editors:
The waste collection commitment says:

We are committed to providing waste and recycling services which are good value for money and which meet the needs of our residents. This means we will:

1. explain clearly what services you can expect to receive;

2. provide regular collections;

3. provide a reliable collection service;

4. consider any special requests that individual households may have;

5. design our services and carry out collections in a way that doesn’t produce litter;

6. collect as many materials for recycling as we can and explain to you what happens to them;

7. explain clearly what our service rules are and the reasons for them;

8. tell you in good time if we have to make changes to your services, even temporarily;

9. respond to complaints we receive about our services; and

10. tell all our residents about this commitment to collecting waste.

For media enquiries please contact:
Amanda Burns, Leeds City Council press office 0113 395 1577
email: amanda.l.burns@leeds.gov.uk