I have received complaints from people in Chapeltown where the new recycling scheme has started. They tell me the box for paper and card is heavy and inconvenient and that they have to take their drinks cartons and most of their plastics to a bring-bank, because the new scheme only accepts glass, plastic bottles and cans.
The Lib Dems made an election promise to offer more kerbside recycling, and government targets require councils to offer a second waste stream by 2010. But it was always going to be difficult because of the contract signed by the Lib Dems themselves with Onyx (now Veolia) in 2001. This committed Sheffield to 30 years of incineration with recycling for paper and card only, plus a limited green waste service. The new scheme is costing the council £3 million a year and only reducing Sheffield’s carbon dioxide emissions by 0.12%. It is also likely to put local recycling companies out of business because the recyclates are being trucked to Veolia’s own plant in Wolverhampton.
The Green Party recommended a waste strategy based on reduction, re-use and repair as well as recycling which would create more jobs and save more emissions. But the Lib Dems did not see fit to listen to our ideas and voted .against our budget proposal for a free bulky waste collection.
Cllr Jillian Creasy, Sheffield Green Party