Its official – for the second successive year Warwickshire County Council is the country’s most improved shire authority for recycling and composting.
In 2009/10 Warwickshire authorities recycled and composted 48 per cent of household waste – an increase of five percentage points on the previous year.
This is well above the national average of 40 per cent and now the county council has set it sights on an ambitious target of recycling 60 per cent of waste by 2016.
As a result of increased recycling by residents, and a reduction in the amount of waste being produced, the total waste sent by Warwickshire to landfill reduced by 15.7 per cent last year.
The reason for the increase in recycling is attributed to Warwick, Stratford and Rugby now all having a biowaste – combined food and garden waste – collection service covering all properties and alternate weekly collection of residual waste. There has also been a marked improvement in recycling across the Warwickshire Household Waste Recycling Centres.
Cllr Alan Cockburn, Warwickshire County Council’s Portfolio Holder for Environment and Economy and Chair of the Warwickshire Waste Partnership, said: "Achieving the most improved shire county for recycling for the second year running shows our commitment to recycling and is in no small part down to the public doing their bit.
"By increasing the amount of household waste recycling, residents will also be saving themselves money because less will be spent on sending it to landfill.
"Our target is to reach a 60 per cent recycling rate by 2016 – which is far more ambitious than Government targets and shows how much we think we can achieve in Warwickshire."
Warwickshire’s recycling and composting rate is made up of the district and borough collections as well as the county council’s Household Waste Recycling Centres.
Stratford achieved the highest composting and recycling rate at 58.6 per cent followed by Rugby at 51 per cent and Warwick at 49.3 per cent. Nuneaton is at 34.2 per cent and North Warwickshire at 27 per cent. The waste partnership is working closely with these two authorities to enhance participation rates.
In terms of recycling centre performance, the Princes Drive site in Warwick District reached the highest recycling rate of 75.8 per cent. The County Council has nine Household Waste Recycling Centres and the average rate of recycled material is 60.1 per cent.
Warwickshire County Council continues to run many successful waste minimisation initiatives under the Recycle for Warwickshire banner. They include the Love Food Hate Waste campaign, home composting, junk mail and the home wood chipping service.