TWEED RESIDENTS have raised concerns following changes to Tweed Shire Council’s Bin Collection Service commencing July 1 but Council says the service will bring cost benefits to the community and reduce landfill.
The new Bin Collection Service will affect urban residential properties and will include a weekly organics collection service (green-lid bin) for all food scraps and garden waste, and fortnightly garbage (red-lid) bin and recycling (yellow-lid) bin collection.
The changes will apply to urban residential while rural properties and multi-unit developments larger than two units (unless already provided with a green bin service) will remain on the two Bin System.
Several concerns raised across the community include frequency of garbage (red bin) collection, illegal dumping, odour and sanitation.
In a statement to The Weekly Tweed Shire Council said the changes aim to reduce landfill with the NSW Government setting a state target to direct 70 per cent of waste away from landfill, by recycling and reusing materials where possible.
“The Tweed cannot come close to meeting that target without the introduction of the three Bin System, and its organics service, because of the high proportion of food waste currently in households’ red lid bins,” the statement reads.
“The new service will change what goes in each bin and when each bin is collected.”
“The three Bin Service will bring cost benefits for the community and ratepayers because organics and recycling services are cheaper to operate than sending waste to landfill.
Council said the current level of household waste saved from landfill in the Tweed is only 42 per cent.
“The Tweed will never be able to come close to achieving that 70 per cent target without the introduction of the three Bin System and its new organics service,” the statement reads.
“Audits show 51 per cent of what goes into Tweed households’ red landfill bin is food and garden organics waste that could be put to much better use.”
“In 2013, an audit of 220 household red-lid waste bins throughout Tweed Shire found 39 per cent of what goes into our bins each week is food waste – and this level is increasing.”
A facility will be constructed at Stotts Creek Resource Recovery Centre to process the organic waste to produce high-quality, nutrient-rich compost for use by local farmers and households.
Delivery of green-lid bins will start near the end of May and it will take about four weeks for all the bins to be delivered.
“With food waste now going to the Organics service, the green-lid bin will be emptied weekly, while the red and yellow-lid bins will be collected fortnightly on alternating weeks.
The day of the week for collection will remain the same for each household,” Council’s Director Community and Natural Resources, Tracey Stinson, said in a Council media release.
“The three Bin System will bring us in line with the 28 other NSW Councils that are already providing a food and garden waste organics service, including five of the seven Northern Rivers local governments – Ballina Shire, Byron Shire, Clarence Valley, Lismore City, and Richmond.”
Households that already receive a green-bin service are not likely to have any increase in fees under the three Bin System. Urban residents that don’t currently have a green-lid bin will have a modest increase in waste costs.
“However, the three Bin Service will bring cost benefits for the community and ratepayers because organics and recycling services are cheaper to operate than sending waste to landfill,” she said.
Council will also deliver a free kitchen caddy and an initial supply of compost-approved green compostable liners to each eligible household. The caddy is a compact container to be kept in the kitchen before transferring organic waste to the green-lid organics bin.
According to Council the organic waste bin will not smell.
“Generally, the organics waste in the green-lid bin should not smell,” the statement to The Weekly read.
“Food waste does not go off quickly using the organics system and it is very unlikely contents of the green-lid bin will attract flies or vermin. But in warmer weather, if you are concerned prawn peelings or fish might be an issue before collection day, try putting them in the freezer and then into the organics bin closer to collection day.”
From July 1, the green-lid bin will accept:
All food scraps – fruit (including citrus), vegetables, meat, seafood, bones, dairy products, eggs, cereal, shells, pasta, coffee grinds, tea bags and takeaway scraps.
Garden waste – palm fronds, lawn, clippings, garden prunings, leaves, weeds and flowers.
Some paper products – tissues, food-soiled paper products such as pizza boxes, shredded newspaper and compostable products.
Council approved compostable liners.
This project was supported by the Environmental Trust as part of the NSW EPA’s Waste Less, Recycle More initiative, funded from the Waste Levy. For more information visit www.tweed.nsw.gov.au/BinServices.