Agenda Item No. 5











Cabinet was provided with an update on recent changes to waste legislation and to seek agreement to a review of our current and future recycling arrangements in order to ensure compliance with the new legal requirements.


Cabinet on the 6 July, 2011(min no C1367) revised the Council's Municipal Waste Management Strategy (MWMS) to reflect changes in service delivery considered necessary to meet Welsh Government  (WG) recycling targets.


The 2011 services change was always considered to be part of a 5 year business plan to meet the WG 2015 / 2016 recycling target and householders were informed of this at the time, and that it may be necessary to revise the service again to continue to comply with WG, UK and EU Legislation in the future. 


The new Regulations that apply from January 2015 require the 'separate' collection of glass, paper, metals and plastics unless it could be demonstrated that other collection methods can produce high quality recyclate without separating them prior to collections.


The 2011 Waste Regulations did not prohibit the use of all co-mingled collections of the four waste materials from 2015, they do however, establish that separate collection was the default position and set out the conditions where that default position can be deviated from.  The two tests that must be satisfied to do so, are whether:


(a)       It is necessary to ensure the collection is carried out to facilitate or improve recovery of the materials;

(b)       It is technically, environmentally and economically practicable (TEEP).

This is to ensure that the collected recycling is of "high quality" to meet the quality standards of the relevant recycling sectors.


The report highlighted that there were a number of significant issues that had hindered and delayed the possibility of welsh co-mingled collection authorities such as the Vale of Glamorgan carrying out the above 'tests'.


Over the last few months officers had been meeting with Waste Resource Action Programme (WRAP) in an attempt to bring forward the Council's Collective Charge Programme (CCP) service review.  Welsh Government were now committed that WRAP would carry out a service review as stated prioritising the Technically Economically Environmentally Practically and necessity test within the overall review in February, 2015.  National Resources Wales who were the Regularity Body for WG had stated publically that their enforcement priorities would initially focus on the commercial collection sector rather than municipal.  It was therefore extremely unlikely that local authorities would be subject to any enforcement action for not carrying out their reviews pre January 2015 and WG considered WRAP carrying out their service review in February 2015 to be appropriate and in compliance with their guidance.


This was a matter for Executive decision




(1)       T H A T the need to carry out a recycling collection assessment to assist in determining whether the existing kerbside collection, arrangements were compliant with the new waste legislation be agreed.


(2)       T H A T the existing method of kerbside collection of dry recyclates continued in the interim.


(3)       T H A T Cabinet receive a further report on the outcomes of the assessment and any possible service delivery changes that may be necessary to comply with Welsh Government's (WG's) collection guidance,  and the new legal requirement to separately collect paper, glass, metals and plastics following a full service review to be carried out within WG's Collaborative Change Programme (CCP).


(4)       T H A T the report be forwarded to Scrutiny Committee (Economy & Environment) for their consideration and comment.


Reasons for decisions


(1)       To ensure that the future collection policy was compliant with WG guidance, policy and legislation.


(2)       Due to the absence of any evidence that would suggest that the current service does not meet the new legal requirements.


(3)       To ensure that all details of costs and / or possible service revisions for recycling collection were reported and fully considered by Cabinet prior to any future service changes.


(4)       In order that the views of Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment) could be obtained and considered by Cabinet.



Attached as Appendix – Report to Cabinet – 23 FEBRUARY 2015