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Council defends no plastic collections

Plastics recyclate

Carlisle City Council has defended itself for not collecting materials including plastic waste from newly built properties after criticism from residents.

The Daily Mail reported that residents on Alders Edge estate in Scotby, Cumbria, had received a letter from the council saying it would not be picking up plastic, cardboard and garden waste from their homes.

The paper said they were told to take the materials to a recycling bank, although but the nearest ones at Tesco had been shut since the floods in the area at Christmas.

A spokesperson for the council defended the letter, which was sent to residents in the autumn, before the flooding.

The council says the affected residents are part of its kerbside green box recycling collection scheme, which includes paper, glass, aerosol and food and drink cans, but it was not able to offer other materials because of financial restraints.

“Given the current economic position of the council and recent cuts made to funding we are looking at ways in which we can expand the current level of services to include provision of other forms of recycling,” the spokesperson said.

“Following a review of how we deliver these services, we are hopeful that we can extend the enhanced service to newly built properties at some point in the future.”

There was some dispute about whether Carlisle was allowed not to collect plastic, as it is one of the four statutory materials under EU directives.

However, MRW understands that under TEEP regulations local authorities are allowed to use recycling banks as a part of a separate collection.

Environmental Services Association policy adviser Roy Hathaway said: “It is the responsibility of local authorities to meet the legal requirements of the Household Waste Recycling Act and the EU Waste Framework Directive as regards the collection of recyclable waste materials in their areas.

“Decisions made in this area should be based on sound evidence and a thorough assessment of local circumstances and the practicalities involved.”

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