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Tetrapak re-cycling facilities

Drinks carton re-cycling sites in Spelthorne

Waste and Recycling

Alternative Weekly Collection (AWC)

Spelthorne has adopted AWC with effect from Monday 24th September 2007. This system is used by many other Councils but there is a lot debate about the merits of the system and these arguements are summarised below. The principal of AWC is that household waste is collected every other week with recyclables collected the week when waste is not collected. In moving to AWC the frequency of household waste collection is halved.

One of the consequences of AWC is that all recyclables are mixed together when they are collected. This is because the same collection vehicles are used in each case and there is no ability to collect separate materials and prevent them from becoming mixed.

The Advantages of AWC

The Disadvantages of AWC

Is mixed recycling better than separation at source?

The answer is that it depends on what you are trying to achieve. If the aim is to get the level of recycling up to about 40% then mixed recycling will get you there fairly easily. If you believe that we should recycle as much as possible, then you would want to have separatation at source i.e. putting separate recyclables in separate bins.

Local Liberal Democrats have been very critical of he low level of recycling that Spelthorne achieved prior to AWC. The performance of the Council was one of the worst in the country, largely due to the lack of proper facilities. In general Spelthorne Liberal Democrats support the AWC initiative because it represents a big step forward. However we are concerned about the number of houses, and particularly flats, that do not have any recycling facilities under AWC because of the inability to site the large green bins in locations with little or no space. We are also concerned that the current contract is limited in what can be recycled, for example not all types of recyclable plastics can be processed. We want recycling to become a way of life for every resident and for this to be simple with good facilities available for all residents.

The Liberal Democrats are firm believers in the environmental benefit of recycling. We believe that Spelthorne Borough Council is failing in its duty to the local community in respect of the recycling facilities that are provided. Much more could be done in making recycling easier for people. In our experience most people desparately want to recycle as much as possible.

Local Liberal Democrats want to see recycling achieved at the same levels as in Switzerland and Germany. More can and should be done and it is Liberal Democrat local and national policy to raise the level of recycling provision.

Update on Surrey Waste Plan

The Waste Plan has been submitted to the Secretary of State - in the face of strong opposition from the Liberal Democrats at Surrey County Council who believe the plan is far from 'technologically neutral' as the Executive maintain. This plan will be the subject of a public inquiry in February 2007, which again will allow interested parties to make their views known. After this it will come before full Council in June 2007 and, if approved, will then pave the way for planning applications for thermal treatment plants including mass burn incineration.

Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy

Consultation on the Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy (JMWMS) has closed and at the time of writing was due for approval by the Surrey Local Government Association, with a recommendation for its adoption. This brings together plans from the 11 collection authorities and the 1 disposal authority, Surrey. A progress report will appear annually, with a thorough review, probably every five years. Three Liberal Democrats currently sit on the JMWMS board - Sarah Di Caprio (Surrey County Council), Victor Scrivens (Waverley BC) and following a change of administration in May, Ken Howard (Woking BC).

Waste incinerator

Surrey County Council are considering the need to site an incinerator somewhere in the north of the county. The sites being considered include ones which have a significant potential impact on Spelthorne residents. The Liberal Democrats are actively engaged in the debate and would encourage everyone with a vested interest to take every opportunity to be involved in the consultation. As is the case with most "political" issues - if you have an opinion, let the decision makers know what you think. You may be surprised by how many others agree with you.

Liberal Democrat Environment Links

The environment has always been a major concern for Liberal Democrats. Our policies are focused on three main areas:

Full details of these policies are available by following the links below.