Bath firm's surprise at trade waste recycling rate
A waste firm which serves more than 400 businesses in the heart of Bath says it is amazed at figures suggesting that only 20 per cent of the city centre's commercial rubbish is recycled.
Businesses in the city centre are to be encouraged to put their faith in just one contractor rather than the current figure of more than 15 firms which pick up waste from shops, offices, restaurants and hotels.
The Bath Business Improvement District (BID) team has appointed experts to launch a formal tendering process, claiming that at the moment little more than 20 per cent of trade waste goes for recycling.
The across-the-board figure has come as a surprise to one of the biggest operators in the city centre, Keynsham-based Green Acre Recycling.
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The 12-year-old firm recycles 59 per cent of the waste that it picks up on its seven-day collections in the heart of the city.
Partner Colin Wright said: "We were the first ones to recycle in this city and we recycle as much as we can."
The firm's vehicles run on biodiesel made from the cooking oil which it collects and it recycles paper, cardboard, glass, wood, plastic and metal.
The BID office is keen to slim down the number of firms sending lorries and vans into the city centre and to reduce the different varieties of bags and containers used.
Mr Wright said his firm agreed that split bags were unsightly and attracted birds, and his workers will ring key customers in gull-prone areas to warn them the lorry is on its way to minimise the period sacks are left on the street.
Mr Wright and his business partner Suzanne Parsons say they cannot see a way in which all the city's commercial waste could be dealt with by one firm within the current collection windows set down by B&NES Council.
They argue that it would be better to have two firms – one collecting bags, and the other emptying bins.
The BID office said its statistic came from a survey carried out by a consultancy firm which works with business improvement districts up and down the country.
The survey by Meercat Associates, which looked at the city centre in September 2011, said: "Indications identify that approximately 79 per cent of waste generated by the surveyed businesses is currently being sent to landfill."
The office has asked waste management firm Eunomia to start the process of asking operators to tender for the city centre-wide work, with the aim of getting a new regime in place by next April.