Glass recycling could return in Kirklees as part of ambitious plan

Glass recycling could return in Kirklees by 2024 and food waste collections could start by 2025 under new plans agreed earlier this week.

Thursday, 16th December 2021, 2:30 pm
Green bins on a street in Kirklees

Five recycling centres in the borough and closed landfill sites are also set to return to local authority control under 10-year contracts as part of a wide-ranging overhaul.

The revamp comes as a long-running waste contract with French-owned Suez is set to end, prompting Kirklees Council to set out its vision up to 2030.

That vision includes achieving a recycling rate of at least 70 per cent at household waste and recycling centres and recycling at least 55 per cent of municipal waste.

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Speaking at a meeting of the council’s decision-making cabinet, Coun Naheed Mather said the new strategy aimed to “significantly improve” recycling rates.

She said it would “give us greater flexibility as a council to improve the standard and efficiency of the whole waste and recycling service.

“A key positive … is that it would give the council complete control of the waste and recycling service and would remove the limitations that currently exist around what residents can recycle.”

The council is in the final year of a 25-year waste contract with Suez. That was recently extended by a further two years to allow the changeover to happen.

It will now end on March 31, 2025 with “ownership of fully operational and maintained assets” to be handed back to the council at expiry.

Staff will be transferred via TUPE to the council.

Taking services back in-house allows the council to have complete control over recycling which, under Suez, has seen residents face “significant limitations” when attempting to recycle some materials.

The council has said that ensuring Kirklees has modern, sustainable services is “key” to its vision.

Part of that will be to increase recyclable materials collected at the kerbside and that a recycling service is available to all schools, businesses and charities within the borough.

The Government has set aside £300m nationally for councils such as Kirklees to bid for in order to set up free food waste collections from 2025.

Technical consultants Wood Group UK PLC have drawn up an outline business case to steer the council towards its ambitions.

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