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Council urges local people to Talk Rubbish!

30 January 2018

Local householders are being encouraged to give their support for a new campaign – Let’s Talk Rubbish - to raise awareness about what goes into our bins.

Since the introduction of blue bins Derry City and Strabane District Council has made significant savings through recycling – but thousands of pounds are still being lost through contamination. That money could be channelled into projects and services right across the Council area.

Launching the campaign today the Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District, Councillor Maolíosa McHugh, stressed that everyone has a role to play when it comes to protecting our environment.

“The Let’s Talk Rubbish Campaign will raise awareness by providing the correct information on the appropriate materials for disposal in each bin and making recycling more user friendly for everyone. With just a bit of effort we can all benefit from a cleaner environment as well as channelling the savings into the provision of additional and better services across the District.

“Regarding the damage which has already been caused to the environment we all have to accept some responsibility. I want to encourage everyone to now step up to the mark and play an active part in addressing this issue and creating a better place to live for the next generation.”

In terms of the money currently being spent on disposing of local waste it costs Council £110 per grey bin, £54 per blue bin and £60 per brown bin in treatment prices per tonne.

Council’s Head of Environment Conor Canning said that Council is committed to driving those costs down.  “At the moment we have issues with people putting things like nappies plastic bags and food in their blue bins,” he explained. “We particularly have problems in student populated areas with low recycling rates. This all amounts to significant pressure on resources, and a major cost to the Council and therefore the ratepayer.

“It’s very simple – if more people dispose of the right waste in the right bin, our recycling rates will go up, we will pay less and there will be a direct positive impact on the environment. The money we save will be spent on play parks, street cleaning and better service delivery - all things which will enhance the lifestyle of everyone living here.”

At the heart of the campaign is a very simple message – check first before you dispose of items which may be contaminants. And there will be a wealth of information available in a number of formats to ensure everyone has access to the correct instructions regarding recycling.

The Let’s Talk Rubbish Campaign will feature billboards and online animations designed to inform people about what materials go in their blue, grey and brown bins. Staff will also be out and about engaging door to door with students studying at NWRC and Magee Campus as well as carrying out an audit of what bins students have available. Landlords leasing Houses of Multiple Occupancy will also be reminded of their responsibilities to provide blue bins as well as grey bins.

Chair of Council’s Environment and Regeneration Committee, Cllr Angela Dobbins said: “We can all do our bit to recycle, it just requires a little effort to change habits at home. There has been much media coverage lately of the dangers of irresponsibly disposing of plastics to wildlife and the environment, and this Council area should be at the forefront of the movement towards a Zero Waste economy. Our schools are doing a fantastic job promoting that message to our children, now the rest of us must lend our support and get behind the campaign.”

For more information on the Let’s Talk Rubbish campaign and how you can get involved visit www.derrystrabane.com/rubbish

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