Decision taken to close plastic bring banks in Basingstoke

by Basingstoke Gazette

A decision has been made by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council to close all of its mixed plastic recycle banks.

Across the borough there are 29 bring banks in 10 different locations where residents can dispose of ‘low quality’ plastics.

However, as of Thursday, 18 October, these bring banks will be closed as the council said its contractor does not deem them to be cost effective anymore.

The borough council said that it will continue to look at ways to dispose of this plastic waste in the most environmentally friendly way possible.

Cabinet member for regulatory services and the environment at the borough council, Cllr Hayley Eachus, said: “There has been a drop in the market for recycling mixed plastics making it unviable for the company providing mixed plastic bring banks in the borough to sell on the material for recycling. This is a national issue affecting other local authorities around the country.

“It is important that the items we collect at these banks are being recycled or, if this is not possible, then the most efficient and environmentally friendly method of disposal used.

“To guarantee this we have decided, for the moment, to close the plastic recycling banks from Thursday, 18 October while we work with Hampshire County Council to look for markets for this material.

“I would like to encourage residents to continue to recycle clean plastic bottles including drink bottles, shampoo and bleach bottles in their kerbside green bin and place all other plastics in their grey waste bin. This will be sent to the Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) to produce electricity which is fed back to the national grid and is still the best option, environmentally, for non-recyclable waste.”

Even though the borough council has encouraged residents to continue to recycle clean plastic in the normal way, the news has been met with frustration from residents.

Andrea McIver posted on Facebook: “You are letting us down B&DBC, if other councils are able to provide a full recycling service then we want better transparency from you on why you can’t.

“Do you not have the right people with the right skills in the right jobs negotiating these contracts?”

Bob Allred added: “Are we really being encouraged by a responsible council to put even more plastic into landfill because they are incapable of dealing with the environmentally proper disposal of these items. The mind boggles.”

The borough council said it is working with Hampshire County Council, which is the disposal authority, to work out a long-term solution.