Harrogate Borough Council picking up the pace on recycling

Harrogate council has made changes to its recycling scheme.
Harrogate council has made changes to its recycling scheme.

Residents across the Harrogate district can now recycle more waste, including cardboard boxes, following a boost to the council’s kerbside ‘box and bag’ scheme.

The authority is expanding the range of materials it collects in an effort to further reduce the amount of waste it takes to landfill.

Up to now residents have only been able to recycle paper, card, glass jars and bottles, food and drinks cans, aerosol cans, tin foil and plastic bottles at the kerbside.

Now for the first time, residents are allowed to put brown cardboard, tetrapak drink cartons, and some plastic pots and tubs in their kerbside recycling.

Up to now, if people wanted to recycle these items they had to take them to one of the district’s household waste and recycling centres.

Councillor Michael Harrison, Harrogate Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Waste Reduction and Recycling, said: “Feedback from residents shows that they would like to recycle more. By expanding the range of items that can be collected as part of our kerbside recycling service we will be able to help them achieve this aim. We want to make it as easy as possible for residents to recycle and the expanded kerbside service will mean they don’t need to travel as often to one of the district’s waste and recycling centres.”

Since introducing a wheelie bin/recycling alternative weekly service in July 2012, recycling rates have steadily grown. Kerbside recycling rates exceeded 10,650 tonnes in 2014/15 compared to 7,584 tonnes in 2012/13.

A reduction in landfill costs and taxes as a result of increased recycling has allowed the council to achieve savings to the tax payer of over £725,000 annually.

Coun Harrison said: “Our residents have embraced the council’s efforts to increase recycling and I would like to thank them for all their efforts. The current kerbside recycling service has proved to be a huge success. It is benefiting the environment as we are reducing the amount of waste we send to landfill. The council has achieved significant savings for the tax payer, and whilst the cost of recycling has increased as the value of the recycled material has fallen over recent years, recycling still remains a cheaper option than sending the waste to landfill.”

Residents who want to recycle the new materials are asked to do the following before putting them in their recycling box or bag:

• Remove any plastic wrapping or bubble wrap from cardboard boxes

• Cut up the cardboard so that it fits into the blue recycling bag

• Wash and squash plastic pots (eg yogurt pots, plastic tubs, margarine tubs) and tetrapak cartons (wax cartons used for fruit juice) and put the lid on so that they take up as little space as possible in the recycling box. Black plastic food trays and plastic plant pots cannot be recycled in the scheme.

For more information visit www.harrogate.gov.uk/residentialrecyclingcollections