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Council consults on kitchen waste collection

Council consults on kitchen waste collection service

North Shore City Council proposes introducing a household kitchen food waste collection service as a means of significantly reducing the amount of waste currently going to landfill.

The council's works and environment committee chairperson, Joel Cayford, says kitchen waste is the single largest component of household rubbish that goes to landfill with 45 per cent (by weight) being food scraps.

"Council trials show that given the right containers and collection services, people are prepared to separate food scraps from other rubbish for separate collection. Now we need to find out what the rest of the city thinks," says Councillor Cayford.

North Shore City is seeking community feedback on the proposal as part of its draft 2004 - 2014 City Plan (or long term council community plan) - a new requirement under the Local Government Act 2002.

The new service would involve voluntary weekly collections of kitchen food scraps such as vegetable and meat scraps, in specifically designed bins that have been supplied by the council. These would be collected and composted to produce reusable resources.
Joel Cayford says a comprehensive review of potential waste services taking into account effectiveness, user friendliness, street cleanliness and cost, and a successful trial in Bayswater at Devonport, have all encouraged the council to consider introducing a city-wide household organic waste service.

It is proposed that the kitchen food waste service will be funded through a levy on all rubbish going to landfill, which will result in a small increase in rubbish collection charges.

Councillor Cayford says if people take steps to reduce their rubbish, this small increase can potentially be avoided.

"People will pay a bit more to put rubbish into a hole in the ground, and less for organic waste which can be processed, recycled and reused. The bottom line is, the less waste we produce the better off we're all going to be and the closer we'll be to achieving our waste minimisation targets," he says.

"In the longer term, reducing the amount of organic matter that goes to landfill will have environmental benefits including reducing noxious leachate and greenhouse gases that are produced when it decomposes in landfills.

"We also have a social responsibility to reduce the amount of rubbish going to landfill and owe it to neighbouring communities such as Rodney District which currently landfills rubbish on our behalf." The council is seeking feedback on its draft kitchen waste collection proposal, which if supported, could be implemented from July 2005. The last day for submissions is April 22.

City Plan information about the proposal to introduce a kitchen waste collection service is available on the council's website at www.northshorecity.govt.nz, at area offices or by calling Actionline on 486 8600.

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