Renewing the recycling and waste contract

From 1 March 2017 our recycling and waste collection contract will be taken over by Biffa. The new contract will continue to provide the excellent service that residents value, plus some improvements.

We will be investing £8m to replace equipment that is at the end of its life, including new collection vehicles, machinery and depot facilities to make sure we are collecting refuse and recycling in the most efficient way possible. Vehicles will also be fitted with equipment that shows real-time route information. It also allows us to carry out twice-yearly surveys about the amount of waste and recycling produced.

The local economy is also set to benefit as part of the contract. We have made sure that 3-5% of Biffa’s workforce must be apprentices or trainees and there is an aspiration that at least 90% of the workforce will live in North Somerset.

Kerbside recycling and refuse collections

Kerbside collection arrangements will mostly stay the same but residents will be able to recycle small electrical items (up to the size of a small toaster) in their recycling box, in addition to the items we already collect.

A second different coloured box will be introduced to help residents separate materials for recycling, which helps crews empty boxes quicker, reducing congestion on the road. These new boxes won’t be given out immediately, but will be made available when residents ask for an additional or replacement box.

Recycling and food waste collections will still be weekly. Refuse will be collected every two weeks from existing bins. Properties that use grey sacks or bag ties will continue to use them in the same way they do now.

Garden waste service

Garden waste sacks will be replaced by wheeled bins. Properties will be able to have up to two bins and there will be two sizes to choose from.

  • 180 litre – equivalent of two to three green bags (same as a standard black refuse bin)
  • 240 litre – equivalent of three to four green bags

Information from the current service shows that most people put out three or less green bags, the equivalent of a single 240 litre green bin.

Smaller garden waste sacks will be available for properties that currently have sacks for their refuse.

Recycling centres

Dedicated reuse areas will be introduced at all three recycling centres for items that could be given another home. Hard plastics and plate glass will be added to the list of items that can be recycled and all three centres will have webcams which show how busy the site is so residents can check before setting out.

A resident’s permit scheme will be introduced during autumn 2017, supported by CCTV and automatic number plate recognition systems. It will be free of charge but only available to people living in North Somerset.

Recycling in flats

We will be introducing food waste collections for flats and communal properties. Food waste bins will have lockable lids to prevent spillage or wildlife getting in, and will be removed for cleaning every four weeks.

Bulky waste service

We will be working with a local charity or social enterprise to provide a recycling or reuse service for large items in the future.

Commercial waste service

We will continue to expand our commercial waste collection service for small and medium sized businesses who sometimes find it difficult to find reasonably priced services. These businesses will be offered the option to dispose of their waste and recycling at our recycling centres in Portishead and Weston-super-Mare for a fee.

Look at future editions of North Somerset Life, our social media feeds and this website for more details nearer the time.