Liberal Democrats have renewed their calls for action to increase recycling in York as figures confirm recycling levels fell last year and the Labour run York Council missed its green targets.
Former Coucnil Leader Andrew Waller joins Richard Hill in opposing the closure of the backfield Lane recycling centre in 2012
It’s target was to increase recycling to 48%.
Meanwhile, the amount of waste sent to landfill increased from 53% to 56% over the same period.
The council’s target had been to reduce this to 52%.
Last year it was confirmed that landfill tax in York was set to cost the council £4million a year.
The Labour Council courted unpopularity by ending winter green bin emptying 8 months ago, while also deciding to only provide a free collection service for one bin.
The Council also closed the recycling centre in Beckfield Lane in 2012.
Liberal Democrats have called on the Labour council to back ambitions plans to make York the Greenest City in the North, this includes targets to increase recycling to over 50% and work on introducing a food recycling collection service.
Cllr Ann Reid, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Environmental Services, commented:
“Under the Liberal Democrats household recycling increased from 13% to 45% between 2003 and 2011. Labour has failed to build on this legacy and continue the upward trend, instead we are seeing recycling rates failing across York for the first time for a number of years. As a result the percentage of waste being sent to landfill is increasing.
“Labour’s policies such as closing Beckfield Lane and introducing a charge for Green Bins have been unpopular with residents and are bad for our city’s environmental ambitions. Through an increase in landfill tax these policies are now having a direct impact on the council’s finances and the funding available for local services.”
This week industry expert David Palmer-Jones, chief executive of Sita UK, warned that Britain is heading for an annual fine of more than €200m from the EU from 2020 unless there is a rapid increase in household recycling to hit the EU target of 50% by 2020. The European Parliament is expected to consider increasing recycling targets from 50 to 70% for all EU member states by 2030.
Cllr Reid commented:
“Sita’s Chief Executive claims that there is too often a lack of local leadership and a lack of vision on environmental polices. This is certainly true of Labour in York. Labour are squandering the Lib Dem legacy and have refused to back our calls for a cross-party commitment to make York the Greenest City in the North. The latest recycling figures confirm their neglect of this important issue. Urgent action is needed.”
Recycling Figures in York:
||44% (target 48%)
|Waste to Landfill
||56% (target 52%)
http://democracy.york.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=733&MId=8327 (Item 8 – ‘York Monitor’)
More on the Lib Dem call to make York the Greenest City in the North can be found here: http://www.libdemvoice.org/liblink-time-to-restore-yorks-green-city-status-36059.html