An Additional £1.662 To Roll Out Recycling Schemes In Highland (10/04/08)

Members of The Highland Council’s TEC Services Committee have approved an additional £1.662m to be spent on providing additional recycling services across the Highlands including plastic bottle collections at all the main recycling centres.

As part of its commitment to increase recycling to 40% by 2010, the Council will be expanding its kerbside recycling service to rural households in the Highlands with five new vehicles taking to the road and the employment of 13 additional operating staff who will be based in Skye, Lochaber, Caithness, Easter Ross and Inverness.  For the first time, households in rural areas will be able to take advantage of a monthly door-step recycling collection of paper, card, cans and plastic.

In a move to support the roll-out of the kerbside collections, to work with groups and communities, encourage waste reduction and to spread the recycling message, four Waste Awareness Officers will be appointed and based in Wick, Portree, Fort William and Dignwall.  These officers will have a Council-wide role and work across Area boundaries.

Another improvement will see the pilot plastic bottles recycling scheme currently running in Dingwall and Tain extended to include the Recycling Centres in Wick, Thurso, Alness, Inverness, Granish, Nairn and Fort William.  The cost of providing these plastic recycling facilities is estimated to be £44k.
Chairman of The Highland Council’s Tec Services Committee, Councillor John Laing welcomed the decision to commit additional funds to improving recycling.  He said: “This substantial amount of money highlights the Administrations commitment to reaching our recycling target of 40% by 2010, and shows the important emphasis we as a council put on preserving our environment. 

“When you consider six years ago our recycling rate was a very poor 2%, great strides have been made, and I thank households across the Highlands for embracing recycling and I know there is a huge enthusiasim to do more.  By reducing the waste we produce and recycling as much as we can, we can drastically cut down the amount of rubbish which ultimately ends up going to landfill sites.  I hope everyone will take advantage of these new services which will make recycling more convenient than ever before.”  

Councillors also agreed to continue to fund the social enterprise network, which delivers waste diversion services on behalf of the Council, for a further year.  Previously the network groups were funded through a grant from the national Strategic Waste Funnd but this strand of funding has come to an end.  A review of the work of each group will be undertaken and a further report will be taken back to members of the TECS Committee.


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