Householders face rubbish fines

HOUSEHOLDERS who cost the Suffolk taxpayer £135,000 a year by putting the wrong type of rubbish in the wrong bin could soon be fined.It is estimated 3,000 tonnes of waste a year has to be transferred from recycling plants to landfill sites after being disposed of in the wrong way.

HOUSEHOLDERS who cost the Suffolk taxpayer £135,000 a year by putting the wrong type of rubbish in the wrong bin could soon be fined.

It is estimated 3,000 tonnes of waste a year has to be transferred from recycling plants to landfill sites after being disposed of in the wrong way.

This means authorities miss out on a potential cash bonanza from government.

Money is awarded depending on the amount of waste they manage to use again, with any losses in such income often passed on to the taxpayer.


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In Babergh, residents who ignore instructions about how to use their bins could face fines of up to £80 in future.

A spokesman for the authority said: “The small minority of residents who contaminate their recycling bins cost Babergh Council Taxpayers £33,000 per year - that's equivalent to an extra 1% on the Babergh part of their Council tax bills.

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“Babergh councillors will now have the chance to decide ways of deterring the problem, including the possible use of fixed penalty notices.”

Overall Suffolk householders are better at recycling than most.

Recent figures showed residents in the St Edmundsbury Council area recycled more waste than anyone else in the country last year, with Babergh and Forest Heath councils not far behind.

This helped divert around 36,000 tonnes of waste from landfill sites in Suffolk, netting a total of £750,000 for the authorities in selling the materials on.

Although this still does not meet the collection and processing costs of £2.5million, Malcolm Firth, chairman of the Suffolk Recycling Consortium, said it is important the recycling habit is taken up countywide.

Mr Firth, whose consortium includes six local councils, said: “We need householders to be aware of what they should put in the right bin.

“One message we need to get through is bin bags should not be placed in recycling bins. If something is inappropriate to go in a recycling bin, it should go in a black bin.”

A recent £1.5million investment in the Viridor Waste Management site, in Great Blakenham, means between 18 and tonnes of rubbish an hour can processed. However, this process is slowed if the wrong type of waste is placed into the system.

What to put in recycling bins:

Plastics (except plastic bags or film)

Paper (except shredded paper. Catalogues and books should be separated from hard covers)

Cardboard (large boxes should be folded flat and left beside the bin)

Metals tins and cans

Aluminium foil

All items should be washed, squashed and put in the bin loose, rather than in a bag. Bottle lids should also be removed from containers.

Recycling bins found to contain bagged material may not be emptied

What to put in black bins:

Food waste

Polystyrene pacing and containers

Plastic carrier bags

Plastic food wrapping

Cling film

Crisp packets and sweet wrappers

Waxed containers (juice or milk)

Nappies

Video tapes and cassettes

Large plastic toys or broken garden furniture

Pet waste

Paper towels

Cardboard egg boxes

Shredded paper

Vacuum cleaner contents

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