Posted: Wed 18th Oct 2023

Blaenau Gwent Climbs Recycling League Table in 2022/2023 /
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Oct 18th, 2023

BLAENAU Gwent has surged up the recycling league table of Welsh local authorities.
At a meeting of Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council’s Place scrutiny committee on Tuesday, October 17, councillors received a report on the annual waste and recycling performance for 2022/2023.
The report shows that the county-borough’s recycling figures have gone up from 64.9 per cent in 2021/2022 to 66.71 per cent in 2022/2023.
This has seen Blaenau Gwent move up to ninth in the recycling league table for 2022/2023 from 14 in 2021/2022.
The data for “dry” (plastics/cans/paper/cardboard) recycling rate of 49.34 per cent puts Blaenau Gwent in third place – an improvement on 47.49 per cent and seventh place in 2021/2022.
Neighbourhood services manager, Matthew Stent said: “We’ve seen the amount of residual waste (black bin) that we collect at the kerbside reduce significantly by 15 per cent.
Mr Stent told councillors that more residents are using the HWRC’s (Household Waste and Recycling Centres) to recycle their waste.
But more still needs to be done if the council is to avoid a fine of £200 for every tonne under the 70 per cent target, which will hit Welsh local authorities from 2024/2025.
Mr Stent told councillors that analysis of the black bin contents from earlier this year showed that 23 per cent its contents was food waste – that “could be” recycled.
He said that the council were looking to deal with this issue to “boost our performance.”
Mr Stent said: “Currently we’re in the midst of a campaign to engage with residents and encourage them to recycle more food waste and bolster that element of our performance.”
Earlier this month, the council announced that it would stop collecting extra bulky cardboard.
More cardboard for recycling had been a by-product of the Covid-19 pandemic as people bought bulky items online.
Cllr Wayne Hodgins believed that decision needs to be “looked at” again especially “in the run up to” Christmas when bulky items as gifts will be delivered to homes.
Mr Stent said: “The bulky cardboard element was initially paid for by the (Welsh Government) Covid-19 grant but is now covered by the waste revenue budget to the tune of £100,000.”
He believed that bulky cardboard can now be “quite easily” broken down by residents to be placed in the relevant recycling sack.
Mr Stent added that the referrals from residents to use this extra collection had also been falling.
“We’ve always put in additional resource to pick up excess cardboard over the two week Christmas period and we’ll do the same this year,” said Mr Stent.
Committee chairman Cllr Malcolm Cross said: “We are making progress and going in the right direction.
“We really appreciate and applaud all you are doing.”
Councillors endorsed the report which will go on to be discussed by the Cabinet in November.
Following the meeting, deputy leader and cabinet member for environment, Cllr Helen Cunningham said: “I would like to thank Blaenau Gwent residents for continuing to embrace recycling to help meet the target requirements set by Welsh Government to get to 70 per cent recycling by 2024/25.
“We can all make a difference and every single person that recycles all the waste they can is helping tackle the climate emergency.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

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