Council Commits to Weekly Bin Collections

Green justification for fortnightly rounds is 'false pretext'

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Hammersmith and Fulham Council has pledged not to follow what it describes as the 'filthy trend' to fortnightly bin collections

After warning that food rotting on pavements could cause swarms of flies and a population explosion of rats Hammersmith & Fulham Council has committed to retain both weekly refuse and recycling collections as well as Bank Holiday collections.

The council made the announcement as nine million people face the prospect of keeping waste and other non-recyclables in dustbins and bin bags for a fortnight.

Local resident, Rachel Cootes, says, "I can't believe that some councils are going with fortnightly waste collections, that's disgusting! With the summer coming and the flies multiplying I am so glad that my council is sticking to weekly collections."

Figures released by the Government claimed to show that a shift to fortnightly collections had increased recycling rates and reduce the need for landfill leading many Councils to abandon weekly collections. However, some experts fear that fortnightly bin collections will see a huge rise in swarms of flies. The common house fly will benefit from fortnightly collection as it has a life cycle from egg to egg of 7 to 14 days. Millions of flying insects will benefit from warm summer conditions and, as it can complete its life cycle in as little ten days, thousands could appear on your doorstep before the bins are collected. Typhoid, cholera, tuberculosis, and parasitic worms are all diseases proved to be picked up by flies from garbage that then can infiltrate homes and contaminate food.

Councillor Nick Botterill, cabinet member for the environment, said, "Good sanitation is the basic step in fly control. Food and materials on which the flies can lay their eggs must be removed, since the house fly can complete its life cycle in as little as ten days, removal of garbage at least once a week is necessary to break the breeding cycle. Residents are demanding a cleaner, greener borough not a throw back to medieval times. As a result we have committed to continue our weekly refuse collections as well as twice weekly in some areas and new pick ups on Bank Holidays."

Some council argue that fortnightly bin collections are necessary to force resident to recycle more but Cllr Botterill hit back concluding, "Clean streets and public health are far more important than introducing fortnightly collections on a false pretext that it is 'green'. There must be better ways of encouraging recycling"

May 25, 2007