A big thank you to North Devon residents for a green 2018

North Devon countrysideNorth Devon countryside

Posted on: 21 December 2018

As 2018 draws to a close, North Devon Council is thanking residents for their efforts in recycling this year, and reflecting on the improvements made to its waste and recycling service over the last 18 months.

In June 2017 the council introduced a weekly food waste collection service across the district, and started a recycling trial in a small part of the district.

Recycling trial
3,400 properties were included in the trial of three-weekly black bin collections and unlimited recycling and the results have been very successful, with recycling rates in these properties doubling! The council measured the volume of waste going to landfill and the amount being recycled in the trial area:

  • before the trial 23% of household waste was recycled whilst 77% of waste went to landfill
  • since the trial started 51% of waste is now recycled whilst 49% of waste goes to landfill

The increase in recycling includes the impact of introducing weekly food waste collections. Decisions will soon be made by the council about the future of the trial.

Weekly food waste collections
The council is currently collecting up to 60 tons of food waste a week; waste which would otherwise have gone to landfill. Food waste is taken from your kerbside to the council’s recycling centre at Brynsworthy, and later transported to an anaerobic digestion plant in Holsworthy, where it is converted into energy. Next year efforts will be made to encourage households to cut down on the amount of food being wasted through education and awareness campaigns, helping North Devon get even greener and hopefully cut down those food bills!

New recycling bag trial in Ilfracombe
Last month the council introduced a trial of a new heavy duty recycling bag in part of Ilfracombe, chosen because its residents have reported problems with litter escaping from recycling boxes during windy weather. The bags are heavier and can be sealed to keep plastic and tins safe inside instead of blowing into the street. Progress of the trial will be reviewed after three and six months.

New waste transfer station
Deep Moor landfill site is full, so Devon County Council is constructing a waste transfer station in Brynsworthy. From 11 February the district’s black waste will be taken to the transfer station, then compacted and directed to another plant, where it will be converted into energy rather than buried in the ground.

Northern Devon plastic consortium
Together with Torridge Council and a range of local organisations, charities and businesses, North Devon Council has formed the Plastic Free Northern Devon consortium. The group aims to collectively and individually eradicate single-use plastics in northern Devon. Lots of progress has been already been made and efforts will continue next year and beyond.

Executive Member for the Environment, Councillor Rodney Cann says: “We are delighted with the progress we’ve made with our waste and recycling service in 2018, and we are extremely grateful to the people of North Devon for embracing these changes. More people are recycling than ever before, less waste is going to landfill, and there has been a huge shift in people’s attitudes towards single-use plastics. I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has made an effort to recycling in 2018.We still have a long way to go, but together we are working towards a brighter future for North Devon.”

The council is reminding residents to keep up the good work and ensure they continue recycling throughout the festive period. Waste and recycling collections are different over Christmas and New Year, so make sure you know when to put your bins out over the festive period. Check the council’s website northdevon.gov.uk/collectiondates, where you can also download a collection calendar specifically for your property.

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