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Derry receives £132,000 for food waste collections

Derry City Council has received £132,000 funding to extend its food waste collection services.

Northern Ireland environment minister Mark H Durkan announced the grant, which comes from the department’s Rethink Waste Fund.

Food waste collections will be extended to the remaining households in the council area, 33 schools, 20 charities, 35 businesses and 33 other locations.

Large food businesses processing more than 50kg a week in Northern Ireland must separate food waste for collection from April 2016. This applies to smaller businesses, between 5kg and 50kg a week, from April 2017, when they will also be banned from disposing food waste down the drain and into the sewer network.

More than 150,000 tonnes of food waste is sent to landfill annually in Northern Ireland, of which 118,000 tonnes is household food waste. This accounts for a third of all household waste sent to landfill.

Durkan said: “By sending food waste to landfill we are wasting money, resources and an opportunity to support the green economy and reduce carbon emissions.

“Making the effort to separate out our food waste and disposing of it separately will encourage us all to produce less waste in the first place. This is good news for the environment, the economy and importantly our pockets.

“I have introduced legislation that will require all our councils to collect and transport food waste separately by 1 April 2017. With this grant and the work already completed, Derry City Council is on course to meet the requirements and move towards our shared aspiration of a zero waste society ”

Derry mayor Brenda Stevenson said: “The extension of the scheme will have a significant impact in terms of providing a consistent waste collection service across the council district and increasing the diversion of food waste from landfill.

“This funding will allow the council to progress further towards meeting its waste reduction targets, and reaffirms our commitment to improving the quality of our local environment.”

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