The London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB) has launched a new £1.2 million fund this month in a bid to make recycling easier for Londoners and to increase the overall recycle rates in the capital.
The funding, which will be offered to London boroughs, as well as joint waste disposal authorities, is designed to improve recycling collections of food, bulky items and garden waste at the roadside, and enhance Household Waste and Recycling Centres and the services they provide.
In addition to the household kerbside improvements, the scheme also intends to place an increased focus on recycling collections from flats; an area of recycling which has often been neglected and where recycling rates are even lower than the city’s average.
The fund will be allocated on a competitive basis, after a single round of bidding. The deadline for bids has been set as 4 November, 2013. Bids can outline plans to upgrade current schemes, or introduce completely new ones.
After all bids have been received, the board will assess the different project plans and make decisions based on:
- Whether they offer value for money.
- Effectiveness of communication.
- Project performance and partnership monitoring.
- The project’s ability to cut disposal costs and produce authority savings.
It is anticipated that the money will be distributed to no more than ten projects within the city, with a maximum of £200,000 allocated to each of the projects.
‘Make Recycling as Easy as Possible’
The London Waste and Recycling Board, which operates in conjunction with the city’s councils, as well as the Mayor, exists with the purpose of helping London to make progress in terms of recycling and waste management.
“I am thrilled that the Board is investing in helping London look at ways to improve household recycling.” said Councillor Clyde Loakes, the LWARB’s efficiencies committee chair.
“The fund will allow boroughs to either roll out new or to improve existing schemes, as well as looking at new ways to make recycling as easy as possible for Londoners.”
The LWARB expects to have allocated all £1.2m to the different boroughs by March 2014. From there, it is hoped all schemes will be put into full operation by March 2015.
According to London Community Resource Network, an estimated total of 65,000 tonnes of re-useable products are being put into landfills every year by households within London. That figure does not take into account additional waste produced by the business sector.
London recycling rates currently stand at 32% and the importance of improving that statistic was further demonstrated by recent studies, which show that doubling that figure could lead to council savings of £320 million.
The board’s new fund follows on from their previous three-year scheme, ‘Recycle for London’ (RfL), which came to a close in March 2013.
Although the communications-based scheme produced some levels of success, the board came in for criticism after it was revealed that £1 million of the budget allocated to the scheme was left unspent due to time scale restrictions.
It is, therefore, hoped that the new fund will be able to make more effective use of time and stay on track.