COMMENT: A rubbish performance that must be improved
When it comes to recycling it’s not hard being green – it’s as easy as filling up a dustbin. Disappointing, then, that Portsmouth and Gosport have been ranked among the worst recyclers in the country.
Between 2017 and 2018 Gosport Borough Council was the most poorly-performing authority in the south east and the ninth worst nationally, recycling just 23 per cent of its household waste.
Portsmouth City Council was not far behind, recycling just 24.8 per cent of rubbish and ranking 14th from the bottom. Havant and Fareham fared better but were still below the UK average recycling rate of 45.7 per cent of waste. Given that every household in the area has both a dustbin for rubbish that can’t be recycled and one for rubbish that can, it’s hard to fathom where this goes wrong in so many households. Of course, there is room for confusion. Some types of plastic can be recycled but others can’t. Newspapers and leaflets are OK, but shredded paper and wrapping paper is a no-no. And glass, uniquely, still requires a trip to the bottle bank.
Gosport is working to re-educate residents, starting with children in schools, who can spread the word to mum and dad. It will also employ three enforcement officers to monitor contamination of recyclable waste and advise those who make mistakes.
Portsmouth seems confident that the introduction of black bins this year will have improved the city’s performance. Overall they have reduced the amount of rubbish being disposed of. The new black bins also came with helpful stickers and literature to explain what kind of rubbish should go in which bin.
Let’s hope everbody does their bit to ensure more rubbish gets recycled so that next year our performance in this particular league table is not quite so rubbish.