Barnet Council scrap food waste collections

Barnet Council will scrap separate food waste collection after it found only 25% of homes were taking advantage of the service.

In a statement, the council have said the changes are aimed at ‘ensuring services are run in the most efficient, effective and economical way possible.’

Currently, the separately collected food waste is taken to an anaerobic digestion facility for energy generation but now residents will be asked to dispose of their food waste in their black waste bin. This waste will then be taken to an Energy from Waste facility, where it will be used as fuel for electricity generation.

The additional collection cost of the separate weekly food waste service is £300,000 per year, for around 5,000 tonnes of food waste, equating to £60 for every tonne collected.

Chairman of their environment committee, Cllr Dean Cohen, said: ‘We know that refuse and recycling collections are of huge importance to residents in Barnet. That’s why we will continue to provide weekly waste collections. We are also looking at how we can continue to provide a high-quality service, in the most efficient way.

‘The proposals agreed will see more efficient weekly collection rounds, food waste incorporated into existing collection services, garden waste collections better tailored to suit demand, and stiffer penalties for anyone caught littering or fly-tipping in the borough.’

Green garden waste collections will also undergo some changes. Services will be simplified with collections only taking place on weekdays. They will also be reconfigured to reflect the reduction in usage over the winter months, with a six-week suspension of services taking place each year. This schedule was trialled during last winter. Collection of Christmas trees will, however, be scheduled to take place throughout January.

Waste consultants Wrap have provided New Start with the following table, which shows how food waste collections in the UK have fluctuated. It also shows the number of councils now not offering any kind of collection has crept up over the past couple of years.


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