Reorganisation (reduction) of the green and food waste collection arrangements – trial in the area of Sussex Way N19

Islington Council is trying to cut down the expenses of collecting people’s green and food waste from their homes. Currently a pilot scheme is going on in the section of Upper Holloway bounded by the Holloway Road and the Hornsey Road, N19.

The new plan is for residents to take their food waste buckets to containers down at the end of the street. Friends have reported that at least one of the these repositories has collected flytipping beside it. Many residents won’t bother, and elderly and disabled people won’t be able to do this.

Garden waste is apparently to be taken (if you have a car) to a depository in a local park or to the dump. Otherwise it can be collected at £10 a time.

This is clearly a lesser service. Lots of food waste will go into the general rubbish. Lots of green waste will not be disposed of in the new locations, does that mean more bonfires (adding to Islington’s air pollution) or flytipping?

A response has been received from Claudia Webbe, who is the Lead Councillor for the Environment, and this is below:

Thank you for your email dated 9th July expressing shared concerns about the changes to the way in which food and green waste is collected.

As you know, Islington Council is committed to creating a green and clean borough, however, in order to continue to do this in the face of huge cuts to the Council’s budget, the Council needs to deliver services in a different, more efficient way. A pilot scheme was launched on the 8th June which implemented the changes proposed and these are as follows:

• Food waste will be collected from local communal bins, rather than from individual homes. The food waste caddies can be used to carry food waste to the nearest collection point. The compostable bags for the food caddies will still be available and can be obtained free of charge from local libraries.

• Garden waste can be taken to a collection point situated in various local parks or to the Reuse and Recycling Centre.

• Garden waste collections can be arranged directly from homes for a minimum fee of £10 to cover costs.

There will be no changes to the timetable of collections for rubbish and dry recycling which will be collected on the usual day.

These changes will allow the Council to provide an adequate balance on the things that matter to residents. The changes will also mean a possible reduction in the number of rubbish and recycling vehicles on Islington’s roads, which will in turn reduce emissions and keep costs down. There is no reduction in the Council’s commitment to recycling as it will remain compulsory across the borough.

Last year the cost of disposing of waste was in excess of £7m and I am sure you share the Council’s view that these costs must be reduced. The changes introduced in the pilot scheme are considered the best way of doing so, but it remains important for residents to help by continuing to recycle as much as possible. It is also important that residents in the pilot scheme area provide feedback so that the service can be improved before it is introduced to other areas within Islington. Consideration is currently being given to carrying out a review of the proposed scheme to determine how best to adapt the scheme to provide the best service to Islington’s older and disabled residents whilst preserving the momentum in reducing costs.

I hope that my response clarifies the Council’s position and whilst not agreeing with the scheme, I hope that you can appreciate the need for change.

Kind regards

Cllr Claudia Webbe
Executive Member for Environment & Transport