Councils win legal battle over waste collection schemes
Councils have won a legal battle to implement local waste collection schemes in the way they see fit, after a judge dismissed a judicial review arguing the Government had misapplied European Union directives on co-mingling waste.
Dismissing the claim lodged by the Campaign for Real Recycling today, Mr Justice Hickinbottom, found the Government had properly interpreted the European revised Waste Directive Framework (rWFD) in the Waste Regulations (England and Wales).
Mr Justice Hickinbottom ruled the obligation to establish separate collection of paper, metal, plastic and glass from 2015 applies only where it technically, environmentally and economically practicable.
Cllr Mike Jones, Chair of the Local Government Association’s (LGA’s) Environment and Housing Board, said: ‘Today’s announcement is great news for councils and means we can continue to work with our residents to collect the bins in a way that reflects local circumstances.
‘It’s time for the waste sector to draw a line under this and let councils get on with the job of providing residents with an efficient, environmentally responsible and value for money waste service,’ Cllr Jones added.
Barry Dennis, director general for the Environmental Services Association (ESA) said: ‘ESA members can now get on with the challenge of working with their local authority customers to select the most appropriate collection system locally. This is vital if we are to continue to make significant increases in recycling rates, so that as much of our waste as possible is returned to productive use.’
Hilary Harrison, partner at Anthony Collins Solicitors who acted on behalf of the claimants, said: 'Our clients sought a judicial review because it felt that the Waste (Amendments) Regulations 2012 did not accurately represent the EU Waste Framework Directive in UK law and was negatively affecting the quality of recycled material from UK households.
'The purpose of this judicial review was to provide clarity for local authorities across the UK in regard to current recycling processes. It is essential that recycling be kept at the top of the local government agenda in order to ensure that as much waste material as possible is correctly processed.
'Despite the ruling, our client still feels that commingling is not the most efficient or effective method of collecting waste, and at this stage is considering appropriate next actions.'
Householders spend no small amount of their time separating waste into different stream but it is questionable how much is genuinely recycled and reducing the carbon foot print. Industry carries on inventing new ways of ensuring we have to handle more domestic rubbish, not less.Patrick Newman, ex local government, Stevenage, Added: Monday, 11 March 2013 11:47 AM
A bit of sanity prevails thank goodness...trouble with the CRR is it is strange church of the extreme wing of the green movement and DM reading nimby's. I have had to deal with these people myself in the past and a few minutes conversation reveals the very limited understanding they have of the practicalities, cost and environmental benefits of respective collection schemes...Eco Nasty Local Government , Added: Thursday, 7 March 2013 08:54 AM
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