Waste not, want not

FOOD waste recycling could be coming to Cheshire East after the council signalled its intent to apply for Government funding.

Cheshire East Council is due to discuss an application for a Government grant at a meeting on Monday, August 6.

A report by the council’s waste strategy manager, Ralph Kemp, recommends that the council approves the application, which would see a weekly ‘smelly waste’ service set up alongside the silver bin recycling service.

The Government’s Weekly Collection Support Scheme provides up to £3.8 million to help councils get recycling proposals off the ground.

Food waste is the largest element of the average household waste bin – comprising 33 per cent of the total content.

The move would divert rubbish from landfill, reducing the amount Cheshire East would have to spend on disposing biodegradable waste. If the funding is successful it would cover start up costs of £3.858 million from May 2014, until 2015.

Thereafter, the continuation of the scheme will depend on the council finding a private company willing to undertake collections within projected budgets.

All of Cheshire East’s silver bin recycling currently goes to United Paper Mill’s (UPM) recycling plant in Shotton, North Wales – a site which does not currently handle food waste.

Mr Kemp’s report states that the ‘project is dependant on the identification of a suitable, cost effective treatment route for the food waste by 2014’, and highlights current facilities in Stoke and Newcastle Under-Lyme.

The report indicates that the move would bring Cheshire East in line with Government green energy targets by using anaerobic digestion power stations – where microorganisms are used to break down biodegradable food stuffs, releasing energy.

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