New Recycling Bins Help Caithness Meet Recycling Targets
5th July 2012
Figures released by The Highland Council to coincide with National Recycle Week show that the new refuse and recycling service introduced in Caithness in April 2011 has been a great success. This saw the introduction of a fortnightly refuse collection alternating with a fortnightly mixed recycling collection for paper, cardboard, food tins, drink cans and plastic bottles.
Wick councillor Bill Fernie said,"It is pleasing to see that Caithness people have embraced the opportunities to cut down on waste and help the council deal with this huge problem. The savings to everyone are both environmental and financial and clearly we have made good start but there is still room to improve. It was good move by the last administration to push forward with waste sorting and it is good to see the new administration taking it on as part of their planning for the future."
Since the new collections started, the amount of recyclable material collected at the kerbside in Caithness has increased by 1350 tonnes compared to the previous year. In addition, the amount of waste sent to the landfill site at Seater from refuse collections has reduced by a staggering 2770 tonnes.
Chairman od the Council's TEC Services committee, Councillor Graham Phillips said: "These figures clearly show that the people of Caithness have fully embraced the changes and taken on board the greater recycling ethos in today's society. I would like to thank householders for their commitment to helping the Council work towards the Zero Waste Targets."
The roll out of the new collections to Sutherland in July will complete the introduction of the new service. The latest figures show that the Highland recycling rate has increased from 34% to 39% and that last year the amount of recyclable material collected throughout the region increased by 5500 tonnes to 58,379 with waste down from 102,000 to 90,000 tonnes.
The Council's commercial waste customers are also now obliged to recycle as a condition of their contract. Many businesses have welcomed the introduction of the recycling service and have been able to make significant savings in their waste bills.
The material collected in the blue recycling bins in Caithness gets bulked up at the Seater from where it is transported to a Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) at Perth. Here the materials are separated, baled and sent on for re-processing. Plastic bottles, for example, and depending on the type of plastic, can be used to make items such as garden furniture and clothing, including fleeces, as well as re-moulded into new bottles.
One of the focuses of this year's Recycle Week (18th - 24th June) was on increasing plastic bottle recycling. Any type 1 or 2 plastic bottle can be recycled, including many toiletry and cleaning product bottles - not just milk and drink bottles. Bottles should be rinsed and if possible, caps removed.
Last year 788 tonnes of plastic bottles were successfully recycled in Highland, which works out to about 178 plastic bottles from each household; however, it is estimated that every household uses 500 plastic bottles each year so don't forget to recycle all yours using your blue recycling bin.
Highland Council's Revenues and Business Support section in the Finance Service has won a Bronze COSLA (Convention of Scottish Local Authorities) award for their "Highland Helping Those in Need" project. COSLA Excellence Awards are held annually to reward and recognise projects and developments which establish excellent delivery of services to communities.
SIX Digital Champions are to be nominated to assist with promoting the Digital First Programme and the availability of online services. Digital First Programme aims to greatly increase access to online services, enabling at least 40% of transactions to be carried out online by April 2017.
The Highland Council has created a new way of keeping people up-to-date on the preparation of Development Plans in Highland and giving information of how and when people can get involved. The Development Plans Newsletter provides detailed information on what is happening across the Highlands in a more readable and accessible way making it more appealing to communities and stakeholders.
Members of The Highland Council's Resources Committee have today agreed proposals to localise the Carbon CLEVER Community Grant Fund in 2015/16. The Carbon CLEVER Community Grant Fund, agreed in June 2014, is a £200,000 capital fund which aims to provide communities with financial support to implement relevant and innovative projects to tackle climate change.
FOLLOWING the resignation of Councillor Colin Macaulay (SNP), a by-election will be held to elect a Member for Ward 19, NAIRN Ward. Nairn is a four-member ward.
Digital First Programme aims to have at least 40% of transactions online and deliver £1.3 million in savings over next four years. THE Highland Council Digital First Programme aims to greatly increase access to online services, enabling at least 40% of transactions to be carried out online by April 2017.
A six month review of the Highland Council website, which was launched in 2014, reveals high satisfaction levels amongst Highland residents. The majority of people visit the website to access services or to find information on Council meetings.
Following a successful meeting with the Lord Lyon and The Flag Institute with local community and Highland Council representatives, a competition for the design of a new flag for Caithness is launched today. Caithness Civic Leader, Councillor Gail Ross said: "This is a great chance for people to get creative and design an eye catching flag that will become the public symbol for Caithness.
The Highland Council has launched a new interactive map on its website showing the location of windfarms and wind turbines in the Highlands. The user friendly Windfarm Activity Map covers all scales of wind energy development and provides detailed information such as turbine sizes and planning reference numbers to make it easy for people to get further information.
An independent report commissioned by the Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and other partners has highlighted that 60% of businesses surveyed felt that their use of Gaelic enhanced the value of the language within the community and Gaelic is an asset in particular when used to promote the creative industries, tourism, food and drink. At Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee (Wednesday 18 February 2015) , Councillors had a chance to discuss the report and the Council's strategic approach to supporting the Gaelic language and culture to bring both economic and social benefits to the Highlands.
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