More than a third of household rubbish could be recycled, says new data

Terry Hone

Terry Hone - Credit: Archant

More than 40 per cent of household 'rubbish' in Herts could be recycled, according to new data.

The provisional data from the latest 'waste compositional analysis' survey was reported to a meeting of the Hertfordshire Waste Partnership on Monday, January 25.

The data focuses on the contents of 'residual' waste bins collected from across the county last autumn, and provisional results suggest that around 44 per cent of the contents could have been recycled or composted.

Of the household waste, 28 per cent is food waste and around 14 per cent is made up of 'dry recyclables' including plastic, cans and glass.

The survey found that levels of food waste in bins were highest in Welwyn Hatfield and Stevenage, where it accounted for 36.2 and 35.2 per cent of the bins' contents respectively.


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Food waste was lowest in St Albans, Dacorum and Hertsmere - at 18.3, 22.1 and 22.9 per cent respectively.

In response to the data, partnership development manager Duncan Jones said there had been some "really good progress" over the past five years.

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The data does show that a greater proportion of glass, cardboard, paper, plastic and metal is being recycled, compared to similar analysis five years ago.

But Mr Jones said there was still a lot to do, pointing particularly to the provision of waste food collection services.

As part of the survey, a specialist team scrutinised the contents of a number of ‘residual’ waste bins, taken from nine of the 10 Hertfordshire districts.

According to the provisional data, just over half of the contents of the residual bins in Stevenage could have been recycled – with around 15 per cent made up of dry recyclables and more than 35 per cent of ‘organics’.

And in seven of the nine districts analysed the proportion of ‘organics’ and dry recyclables combined was in excess of 40 per cent.

In St Albans this was at its lowest of all at around 33 per cent.

Partnership chair Cllr Terry Hone, executive member for community safety and waste management at the county council, said: “Waste compositional studies are carried out by local authorities across the UK on a regular basis and are vitally important in understanding the type of wastes being generated by residents."

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