No councils have come forward to take part in the controversial pay-as-you-throw pilots, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has confirmed.
On the last day for councils to apply to run one of the five pilot incentive schemes, a Defra spokeswoman said: We have had no expressions of interest in the pilots at all.
But she added that there could still be an application before the end of the day.
The spokeswoman said that the pilot enabling powers had been introduced by the Government because local authorities had asked for them and added that taking part had always been voluntary. She said that the powers for up to five local authorities to run incentive charging schemes had been introduced in the Climate Change Bill.
The spokeswoman said that if councils had come forward, Defra would have waited for the pilot to be completed before making a decision about whether the powers would be considered for the rest of the Country.
Negative press coverage of the pilots, repeatedly called bin taxes may have dissuaded some councils from coming forward. Defra declined to comment on this.
Despite the deadline being up, the Defra spokeswoman said: If local authorities came forward in the future with a sensible scheme we would discuss it with them. She added that the department would still consider applications tomorrow.
Commenting on the news, Local Authority Recycling Advisory Committee chairwoman Joy Blizzard said: "LARAC supports the idea of powers for local authorities to introduce variable charging if it is right for their area. We know it significantly increases recycling. However, many councils at this time are concentrating on making their current recycling services as comprehensive as possible - by for example including food waste or by expanding collections to the more difficult areas. Once this has been done, variable charging might be looked at again."