Presteigne and Norton still trailblazing Zero Waste
Residents of Presteigne and Norton slimmed their bins by 60% thanks to their community-based Zero Waste Service, and still have slim bins more than a year after the service finished.
Between 2010 and 2013 the community, supported by Cwm Harry (a social enterprise based in Newtown), provided a complete recycling and waste service that began a zero waste revolution. The service was funded by the Welsh Government, Powys Zero Waste and Powys County Council to explore how communities can achieve Wales’ “Towards Zero Waste” Strategy in a way that is both financially sustainable and replicable. It achieved 75% recycling within 18 months – a rate that has been maintained for more than a year after the service finished. The average residual waste per person per quarter is just 21 kg, just 40% of the Welsh average.
At the heart of the project was “Slow Recycling”, an approach designed to build community ownership and understanding of the importance of reducing, reusing and recycling waste. Local staff collected recycling in a converted milkfloat from just 250 houses a day. Landfill rubbish was collected in clear bags, with an opaque blue bag for any messy or private waste. The recycling was stored at a local farm and was sold to contribute to project costs and pay a community dividend to local community groups.
Colin Kirkby, Mayor of Presteigne and Norton and ex-Executive Officer of LARAC said “The Zero Waste Service has proven that it can completely transform waste habits in a very short time. Slow Recycling can help achieve Wales’ Zero Waste targets, making that step change from 50% recycling to 75% recycling. With just two or three years of intensive community involvement in delivering a waste service, a long-lasting change can be achieved. The Slow Recycling approach could be cost-effectively integrated into Local Authority services.”
For more information download the Project Report or contact Katy Anderson katy [at] cwmharry.org.uk