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Concern raised over weekly waste collections

Some councils cannot guarantee the continuation of weekly doorstep rubbish collections, even in the short term – despite the Government introducing a £250m fund to help them secure this.

A survey by the Daily Telegraph found that 31 out of the 53 councils that responded could not guarantee the service until the next local elections, which in some cases were only a year away.

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles announced the fund on September 30, to offer councils financial support for maintaining, or reintroducing a weekly rubbish collection.

Doretta Cocks, the founder of the Campaign for Weekly Waste Collection, said: “It is very worrying. It is a trend that if one can start others are sure to follow. There will be all sorts of ideas going around in town halls at the moment as to how they can cut costs and waste collection will be the prime target because they have got away with so much in recent years.”

The move to reinstate weekly waste collections has been criticised by environmental campaigners, who suggest that it could cut recycling, and lead to more than a million extra tonnes of recyclable materials ending up in landfill sites.

Julian Kirby, the Friends of the Earth's waste campaigner, said: “A return to weekly bin collections is an astonishing waste of taxpayers' money and will have a disastrous impact on recycling.”

About half of all the English councils have switched to fortnightly schemes to save money and to encourage more recycling.

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David Sheard   23/06/2014 at 14:00

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