THOUSANDS of homes across Portsmouth are to be given wheelie bins in a bid to boost the city’s recycling rates.
Councillors on Portsmouth City Council approved plans at a meeting yesterday that will see the bins introduced next week in Paulsgrove, Hilsea, North End, Milton and Fratton.
This will be a learning experience but if other authorities, with similar population sizes and street design, can successfully manage a scheme like ours then I’m positive about this working elsewhere in the cityCouncillor Rob New
It follows the conclusion of a four-month scheme in Cosham’s Highbury estate, with the proposals set to cost £133,000 in an effort to promote recycling across the city.
The aim is to cut annual waste disposal costs by £41,446.
Councillors also approved trials in flat-fronted areas of Fratton where residents will be handed seagull-proof sacks or free plastic bags to dispose of their waste.
The two trials will take place at the same time, each working with 700 households and rubbish will still be collected on a weekly basis. The trial in Cosham is extended for another six months.
Councillor Rob New, the council’s executive member for environment, said each area of the city will be looked at differently with regards to the scheme.
He said: ‘People are used to putting out as many as bags as they want and it will take a long time to change people’s habits, but that’s no fault of their own.
‘Each area of the city is different and will require a different approach, but the response we had from Cosham was incredibly positive and over 95 per cent of people used the bins properly.
‘We want to use the experience from that trial and extend it to other parts.’
Some residents in the Cosham trial complained that the bins were too small – fitting only two-and-a-half sacks – and any extra bags left out weren’t collected.
However, Cllr New said that while the scheme would be a ‘learning experience’ he added that it was ‘really important’ that the city found an alternative way to boost its recycling rates.
A report ahead of the meeting revealed that the city has one of the lowest recycling rates in England, described as ‘unsustainable’.
Cllr New added: ‘This will be a learning experience, but if other authorities with similar population sizes and street design can successfully manage a scheme like ours, then I’m positive about this working elsewhere in the city.’
Councillor Julie Bird, who represents Fratton on the council, supported the scheme but had concerns that areas of Fratton were prone to ‘wind tunnels’ and that the seagull-proof sacks could fly away.