Boroughs join forces to boost recycling

The four boroughs that comprise the Western Riverside Waste Authority (WRWA) have joined forces to mount a new seven-year strategy for minimising waste and boosting recycling. The WRWA is responsible for the disposal of waste collected by Wandsworth, Lambeth, Hammersmith and Fulham and Kensington and Chelsea councils.

The authority collects 500,000 tonnes of waste a year from the four boroughs - a figure that is currently forecast to rise by 10 per cent over the next nine years. Now the local councils and the WRWA have formed a new Riverside Waste Partnership that will aim to first slow down this rate of growth and then reverse it.

The partnership's strategy makes disposal of waste to landfill sites the option of last resort. It aims instead to encourage minimisation - reducing the amount of waste arising in the first place - and dramatically increase the rate at which that waste which is collected is recycled.

Wandsworth has been leading the way in developing new doorstep recycling techniques. The new orange sack scheme enables 83,000 households to put paper, glass, tin cans, cardboard and plastic bottles in a single bag.

The scheme which was introduced in April this year has already lead to a huge increase in the proportion of household waste recycled in the borough - boosting recycling levels by 132 per cent since it started.


The council is also planning better recycling arrangements for people in flats whose rubbish is collected from bulk containers. More than 300 euro-bins for paper and card have already been installed on housing estates, and by the end of 2006 the council wants to increase this number to 1,900 so that recycling is made easy for people who are unable to take part in the Orange sack service.

The council is now on course to achieve its target of 24 per cent of waste recycled by 2006 from a current figure of 12.4 per cent. and the cabinet member for Environment and Public services Guy Senior said:

"We can all do our bit to reduce the amount of waste we produce. The new strategy aims to get this message across to the 900,000 people who live in the four boroughs.

"The successful Wandsworth orange sack scheme is now being taken up by the other boroughs in the partnership. Simplifying the way we collect waste for recycling is clearly the key to continued progress in the future.

"But the strategy is about more than just recycling - it's aiming to raise awareness amongst Londoners of the need to cut back on the amount of rubbish we throw out."

The Partnership is now consulting on the draft of the joint strategy. Copies of the strategy document are available in local libraries and on the WRWA website at . Copies of the document can also be requested from WRWA on 020 8871 2788.

Comments on the document can be E-mailed to or submitted by post to The General Manager, Western Riverside Waste Authority, Smugglers Way, London SW18 3JU. The deadline for comments will be 1st November 2003.

3rd September 2003

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