New pilot scheme to be tested to increase waste recycling in Mid Ulster
Mid Ulster District Council is preparing to act now to meet challenging new waste targets.
New legislation will require councils to increase their re-use and recycling rates to 65% for both household and commercial waste by 2035, while simultaneously lowering the amount of waste sent to landfill to 10% by the same date.
Mid Ulster has been consistently at the top of the recycling table among all 11 councils here, reaching a 58.8% household recycling rate in 2019-20 and also having the lowest household landfill rate of 3.7%.
However, the new targets will challenge the systems currently used to separate and collect waste, as Chair of the Council’s Environment Committee, Councillor Sean McGuigan, explained: “While these targets may seem like they’re a long way off, we need to be acting now to ensure that we meet them.
“Mid Ulster is in a sound position given our performance to date, which is a credit to local people who continue to show a great commitment to recycling.
“This next step will mean being more conscious than ever of what we can re-use and recycle and stopping to think every single time we go to put something in our black bins about whether that’s the only thing we can do with that particular item.
“We will be developing pilot programmes to test new approaches to our kerbside recycling scheme in the next number of years and, as always, be looking for the support of local people as we do so”.
An initial small-scale pilot scheme will involve up to 500 Magherafelt-based households which will have their existing black bins replaced with a smaller capacity bin (240 litre to 180 litre), while providing an additional blue bin for mixed recyclables to increase the capacity to recycle material. Overall the scheme provides a further 180 litres of bin space.
Details of the new pilot programme are still under consideration and anyone who would like further information about recycling in Mid Ulster, should visit the council website.
Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.
Please consider purchasing a copy of the paper. You can also support trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription of the News Letter.