Food waste in the Forest of Dean will be collected separately on a weekly basis to help reduce the amount of waste going to landfill and avoid increasing costs, cabinet has agreed.
At a meeting on Thursday night members of the District Council’s cabinet also agreed to alternate weekly collections of refuse with wheeled bins given to residents.
It was agreed to introduce a weekly opt-in chargeable garden waste collection service, in line with other Gloucestershire councils.
Collection of dry recycling (paper, glass, cans) from households will remain unchanged.
In a recent survey carried out by the council 69% of respondents were in favour of alternate weekly collection if introduced with a weekly collection of food waste (24% agreed strongly, 28% agreed and 17% had no strong feelings).
The changes will be introduced in 2012.
If the council did nothing disposal costs would rise by some £1.53 million which would have a negative impact on tax payers.
Currently 39.7% of all waste collected in the district is recycled and composted. The improvements to the service should increase this to above 50% - a target the council has to meet by 2014/15.
At the same meeting it was agreed to be part of the countywide Joint Waste Partnership, working with other councils to give a joined up approach to collections and disposal, helping us to deliver more cost effective services to residents.
Cllr Martin Quaile, the district council’s cabinet member for the environment said: “This is an important decision both environmentally and financially. The changes are affordable, environmental, will have no impact on council tax and take into account what the public said to us through the waste consultation.
“Through being part of the Joint Waste Partnership we will be exploring even better ways of working in partnership with other authorities in Gloucestershire to get the best possible value for the people of the Forest of Dean. This keeps the possibility of increasing the range of recyclable items we collect.”