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Shropshire throws away the fourth highest amount of waste per capita in the country

Shropshire has been named as the local authority area that produces the fourth highest amount of waste per person in the whole of England, a study has revealed.

Shropshire throws away the fourth highest amount of rubbish per person in the country
Shropshire throws away the fourth highest amount of rubbish per person in the country

The research, by national skip hire company Reliable Skip, analysed the total collected waste in 2022 by each local authority in the country and compared it to the population to discover where the most waste is produced.

The Council of the Isles of Scilly comes in first place, with 1,727 tonnes of waste collected for a population of 2,271, which results in 7,605 tonnes per 10,000 people.

Second is Westminster City Council, in which there were 155,708 tonnes of waste collected for a population of 205,087, and East Riding of Yorkshire Council, in Yorkshire and Humber, came in third, with 5,950 tonnes per 10,000 people.

Shropshire was fourth with its 324,716 strong population producing 179,695 tonnes per year or 5,534 tonnes per 10,000 people.

That equates to more than half a tonne of waste per person in the county.

Paul Bennett, operations director at Reliable Skip, said: “It’s interesting to see how among all these bigger areas, a tiny authority such as the Isles of Scilly tops the entire list."

However, Councillor Ian Nellins, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for waste management, put the high levels of waste in the county down to the rural nature of the area.

He said: "We know that the Shropshire Council area has one of the highest quantities of waste per household in the country, and it’s really important that we reduce the amount of waste we produce.

"However, when garden waste is removed from the calculation for all councils, Shropshire’s performance for all other waste streams relative to other councils improves significantly.

"This suggests Shropshire’s high arisings is strongly influenced by the quantity of garden waste. This is partly because Shropshire provides a free garden waste collection service; and partly due to the proportion of households that have a garden, as well as the size of those gardens. This is all due to the rural character of Shropshire.

“It’s also worth noting that in 2022/23 over 52 per cent of our household waste was recycled or composted – making Shropshire one of the highest performers - with garden waste contributing well over half of this figure.

“At Place Overview Committee in September 2022 councillors supported the development of a waste minimisation strategy to help reduce the amount of household waste generated in Shropshire. This will now be considered by the council’s Cabinet at a future meeting.

“While a new strategy is being developed, many waste minimisation initiatives/programmes are currently underway, including the Master Composters programme which encourages and supports households to compost at home, and work to prevent food waste.”

He added that the waste minimisation initiatives being considered for inclusion in the draft strategy include community composting, upcycling workshops and swapshops, food redistribution, street level sharing and loaning initiatives, free compost bins, a real nappy network and the promotion of alternatives to single use plastics.

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