Milton Keynes Council refuse to waste golden opportunity

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‘Bio gas’ vehicles could help Milton Keynes Council save thousands on waste collections as they hope to ditch the diesel in favour of food and garden waste.

On April 16, the Cabinet will receive a proposal to fuel food and garden waste vehicles with the very produce they carry, which is expected to help the council save up to £130,000 each year on the cost of waste collections.

If the idea of using compressed bio-methane is adopted, it will save more than £300,000 a year on the cost of waste collections in total, including the savings from the bio-methane scheme.

The savings form part of a proposed four year renewal (extension) of the council’s Collections and Cleansing Contract, with private contractor Serco, which began in 2009.

In addition to the financial savings, the proposed contract renewal should also deliver service improvements including a new service pledge.

This covers several elements from ensuring collection staff behave in a courteous and professional manner to collecting waste in a way that does not produce litter to the introduction of a Waste Collection Guarantee, which means that if your collection is missed and not put right quickly, Serco will donate the cost of your collection to the Mayor’s chosen charity.

In addition a guaranteed £15,000 a year will also be donated to support this good cause.

And there will be a new education programme to increase recycling rates in Milton Keynes, which at 54 per cent are already high compared to most other authorities.

Serco will also help fund an additional enforcement officer to get tough with those who litter or fly-tip, creating new recycling banks for textiles and for Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment.

Funding to convert the food and garden waste vehicles will come from the Government’s Weekly Collection Support Scheme (WCSS).

Milton Keynes is one of 87 local authorities who have been successful in bidding for funding from the national support scheme.