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Food Waste Collection An ‘Expensive Experiment’


Two leading Conservative councillors have described the Green Administration’s proposals for a food waste collection trial as an ‘expensive experiment’ that will have little or no environmental benefit for the residents of Brighton & Hove.

The proposals for a food waste trial are contained in a new Waste Management Strategy, due to be agreed by the Green Cabinet on Thursday (8th December) and will cost local taxpayers £½ million. The trial, which will initially cover 6,000 households (expected to be in the West Hove
area) is likely to be extended more widely across suburban areas of the city. Although food waste would be collected weekly, residents’ normal bin collections would be reduced to only once a fortnight.

Furthermore, a detailed ‘Life Cycle Analysis’ in the report, which compares the environmental impact of various waste collection options, reveals that collecting food waste separately brings only marginal benefit compared to using all non-recycled waste to produce electricity at the Energy from Waste plant in Newhaven. The Energy from Waste plant is now fully operational and, in addition to generating enough electricity to supply 25,000 homes, will virtually eliminate the part of Brighton & Hove’s household waste that currently goes to landfill.

Cllr. Geoffrey Theobald – Leader of the Conservative Group – said: “This scheme simply cannot be justified at a time when they are halving the road maintenance budget, reducing library opening hours and getting rid of street sweepers. I’m afraid that food waste collection is another expensive Green vanity project which they are foisting upon the residents of Brighton & Hove.”

Cllr. Tony Janio – Conservative Group Spokesman on Sustainability added:
“The Greens are trying to justify this large expenditure on the grounds that it will be more ‘sustainable’ but, as their own report shows, the independent science simply doesn’t back this up. It would be much more sensible for the Greens to put their efforts into preventing food waste arising in the first place through for example, promoting the take up of food composters, community composting schemes and education campaigns in schools.”