Smaller bins: a boon or a blessing?

February 01 2018

A DEBATE is raging on social media after the introduction of smaller black waste bins.

A DEBATE is raging on social media after the introduction of smaller black waste bins.

South Gloucestershire Council began delivering the 140 litre bins on January 15, although it will be several months before every household receives one.

The authority says about half - 52 per cent - of the household waste in the current 240 litre refuse bins could be recycled so smaller bins will encourage people to recycle more.

But some residents aren't happy about the changes, with one person calling the new bins 'a load of rubbish'.

Disgruntled residents have been taking to the council's Facebook page to express their concerns about the shrunken bins, which measure 50.5cm x 55.5cm x 110cm.

One said: "Our new bins are going to be 140 litres down from 240. I have 6 adults in my household. Even Bristol City Council downsized to 180 litres which looks small. This is going to be a real struggle!"

Some argued that it will lead to people dumping their excess waste illegally and end up costing the council more in the long run.

"What a waste of tax payers money. Watch the fly tipping get even worse," one man said.

Another poster said: "How is an allowance of 2 litres per adult per day, in my household, reasonable?" with the council responding: "Most household waste can be recycled from home and the smaller bin should be adequate for the majority of households if they are making full use of the weekly recycling collections. We recommend that you try the new bin for at least two collections and if you are still struggling, let us know."

But some residents were in support of the green measures, with one reflecting: "I remember when we had 1 small metal bin for a family of six. Everything went in there and somehow we survived. Could the real problem be not the size of the bin, but the amount of waste we generate?"

Residents who can't fit all their household waste into the new bins can apply for another bin but will have to pay £32 a year, unless the extra bin space is needed because of  a medical condition. 

A 50 per cent reduction applies to those getting Income Support, Pension Guarantee Credit, Income-based Job Seekers Allowance or Income-based Employment and Support Allowance. Applications are assessed on a case-by-case basis and the council can arrange to check if households are recycling as much waste as possible.

A South Gloucestershire Council spokesman said: "We will be exchanging bins on two collection routes per day and it will take around 12 weeks to complete the process for the whole of South Gloucestershire. 

"We are starting with areas covered by our Yate depot and will move on to those covered by our other depot in Warmley during March and the beginning of April."

* What do you think of the bins change? Have you changed your views about recycling after watching Blue Planet? Why not write to our letters page?