It’s in the can

A CAMPAIGN to clean up the southside is helping waste bosses beat national recycling figures.

Environmental chiefs at SEPA have released figures showing East Renfrewshire council topped the national average of just under 38 per cent, by successfully recycling 39% of its rubbish.

And ERC look set to exceed its annual recycling target of 43% for 2010/11.

The figures show between October and December 2010 the recycling rate has jumped from 32.54% to 45.66% compared to the same period the previous year.

Council bosses say this is all thanks to the authority’s new managed weekly collections that started in November 2010.

Environmental convener, councillor Eddie Phillips, said: “The waste strategy and cleansing team has been working hard over recent months to implement the waste and recycling collection policy in a bid to meet increasingly tough recycling targets.

“I am delighted with these results and it would seem the hard work of staff and residents alike is starting to pay-off.

“I must thank our residents for participating in this as we couldn’t do this without their efforts and commitment”.

The figures show the council is leading by example, with tonnes of paper, card, glass and plastic being recycled instead of buried in landfill sites or incinerated.

Managed weekly collections have seen residents, except some living in communal properties and rural areas, receive a weekly collection of garden and food waste, a fortnightly collection of general household waste, paper, glass and cans recycling and a four weekly collection of plastics recycling.

Councillor Phillips added: “It’s excellent news. ERC’s performance on recycling is sitting above the national average and above SEPA’s target for Scotland.

“Our managed weekly collections have proved very effective and the response from our residents has been extremely positive”.

In 2002 the local authority landfilled almost 50,000 tonnes of municipal waste with only 12.5% being recycled.

Since then, there has been a step-change with the environmental agenda gaining greater prominence and by 2009/10 only 31,454 tonnes of waste was landfilled by the council.

Councillor Phillips added: “But while the figures are impressive we can still do better. Scotland’s Zero Waste Plan sets very challenging targets for recycling”.