Carlisle is set to save an estimated £1.8 million in landfill fines this year after introducing alternate week collections (AWC). The residents of Carlisle have recycled 52.27% of their rubbish this year compared to 34% during the same time last year. The figure has exceeded expectations and means that the town is one of the best performing recycling areas in the UK. Carlisle City Council recycling manager Jan Magnay said: Since introducing AWCs our recycling rate has increased to 52% and this is partly due the collection of garden waste during the summer. We started off with a trial with 10,000 people and now it has been rolled out to 35,000 people. On the whole the drive has been positive, but with everything you do that is new, people do not like change at first but they get used to it. If the scheme continues, as it is, then the amount of household waste that ends up in landfill this year could be almost half the amount landfilled by the city in 2002. Five years ago, the council landfilled 37,500 tonnes of rubbish; it claims that the figure could be cut by 14,000 tonnes if the scheme continues to be successful. Councillor Ray Bloxham said: If Carlisle residents continue to recycle as well as they are now, the financial, as well as environmental benefits, will be enormous. The council scheme will save the council millions of pounds in Landfill Tax and will help them avoid punitive and potentially crippling fines if too much rubbish is sent to landfill. Image: Credit H Flemming and D Fowler Photography.