In a waste strategy review, the new environment secretary says each local council should develop its own recycling scheme.
Throwing rubbish such as drinks cans and leftover food into landfill wastes money and should not continue, the environment secretary, Caroline Spelman, said today.
Announcing a new government review of England’s waste strategy, Spelman said putting recyclable and biodegradable rubbish in the ground threatened the environment and wasted valuable natural resources.
She said there was a need to go further and faster in boosting recycling rates in England, and that driving forward a “zero-waste society” would save money and create green jobs and industry.
Among the issues the review will look at are more facilities for processing recyclable rubbish in the UK – rather than sending it abroad – and providing clearer labelling of what can be recycled.
The wholesale review of waste policies comes after the new government announced it was scrapping Labour’s “pay as you throw” pilot to cut waste, which allowed councils to reward households that reduced waste and penalised those who threw away more.
Instead, Spelman said local councils should be able to develop recycling schemes that worked in their areas, for example RecycleBank in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead which rewards people who recycle with vouchers for local shops and has delivered a 35% increase in recycling rates in the trial area.