Council promises to accelerate recycling rates despite lockdown hiccup

Mobile recycling centres can help residents manage waste to speed up recycling rates in the city.

Cardiff has been declared as one of the leading cities in the UK for recycling, according to Cardiff Council

Mobile recycling centres for residents who have difficulty recycling at home or live far from the recycling centres, is due to take off over the next few months to achieve recycling goals. 

These centres would appear at sites around the city at regular intervals.

People are encouraged to bring their items that need to be repaired to the Canton Repair Café at Chapter Arts Centre on Saturday. This event intends to promote reuse and avoid landfills. 

Cardiff aims to recycle 70% of its waste by 2025 despite having slipped down in the last year due to lockdown restrictions. 

The pink sticker campaign organised by Cardiff Council has been implemented to ensure that residents abide by the waste management system. As part of the scheme, residents who have not sorted their waste properly will receive a pink sticker on their trash bags and the waste will not be collected. If people fail to separate waste following the warning, residents will be fined. 

The council intends to do more doorstep separation 

The city plans to use the ash from the Viridor incinerator to heat commercial buildings within one mile of the plant in the near future. This includes public sector, council and university buildings. 

Residual waste that goes to the Mixed Recycling Facility but cannot be sorted is sent to the incinerator. “Incineration can be controversial, but it’s better than landfills. The incinerator at least creates a bottom ash which equates to about 10-15% of the waste to be used as construction material. In the worst-case scenario, if we don’t do a good enough job at sorting it, we still get a little bit of recycling out of our way,” said Stephen Cunnah, Councillor of Canton. 

“In Canton, we’ve tried to recycle glass separately which was successful, but we had to suspend it because of the pandemic. At the moment, about a third of the waste goes to the MRF, and is ultimately not recycled because it is contaminated and not sorted properly.  We want to drive down residual waste,” said Councillor Cunnah, discussing the challenges. The government will fine local authorities if they don’t meet the required targets. 

The Council is the biggest contractor to collect waste from businesses 

“We’ve engendered the culture for a long time where you don’t have to reuse your cups and with cheap fashion as well. There is a bit of cultural work to do, from the government to start changing that legislation. The council has got a part to play in that by helping reduce waste and to recycle more,” said Cunnah.