LESS than five per cent of east Cheshire’s rubbish is now being sent to landfill.

When it was formed in 2009, Cheshire East Council sent all its non-recyclable waste to landfill – a total of 95,800 tonnes, which was enough to fill 169 Olympic swimming pools.

But just nine years on almost all black bin waste from across the borough is sent to two energy plants outside east Cheshire, to be used to generate heat and power.

Cllr Don Stockton, cabinet member for environment, said: “We are truly leading the way at CEC with our commitment to transforming our recycling and waste service and we have a fantastic infrastructure to move to a more sustainable waste management system.

“When you consider the journey that we have been on since the formation of this authority nine years ago, you can’t help but feel proud of what has been achieved.

“And the public, of course, deserve a massive ‘thank you’ for making it all possible. Without the residents of Cheshire East being so committed to this, we would simply not be where we are today.”

CEC says that its Middlewich environmental hub, used by its waste management firm Ansa, has helped the council become less reliant on landfill.

It claims that the central location of the purpose-built site, which has been in use for seven months, allows CEC to ‘provide an efficient service with first-rate facilities’.