Two bins or not two bins, that is the question.....

The ongoing debate around the collection of curbside waste continues. Despite past surveys, extensive consultation, many visits to view other city's collection systems there has been a reluctance from the Invercargill City Council to make a decision and stick with it.

The original three bins proposal appeared to be a solid attempt to deal with the problematic green waste that is a headache for many residents and a huge methane producing problem at the dumping site. Past surveys had supported green waste collection and other towns do this and create useful compost. However a number of ratepayers objected to the inevitable increase in charges or having to pay for a system they personally wouldn't use and a growing controversy developed.

The council became split and Geoff Piercy valiantly stuck up for a system and a decision process he had led with mixed reactions from rate payers.

The debate continued for sometime and other Councillors reported on the potential difficulties of turning the collected green waste into commercially viable compost when contaminated waste introduced dangerous elements such as arsenic into the end product. The Timaru Council have invested a lot of money into their compost production and feel that potential contaminants can be kept out with a strong education programme and careful management.

Now we have Mayor Tim suggesting a two bin service to deal with unrecyclable waste and the recyclables. I can remember when the current system was introduced there was a certain level of angst and concern, yet now it is accepted as normal. Perhaps the council should just make a decision and ride through the inevitable adjustment period until it eventually beds in and is accepted. We need to manage our waste even better than we do currently (all the possible recyclables aren't currently collected) and any steps towards more environmentally friendly practices is a step in the right direction. It would be great to see green waste collected for those who do not make their own compost but perhaps there could be a more flexible arrangement of opting in or out of the service....


robertguyton said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
robertguyton said…
bsprout - can you really think of any property in Invercargill that couldn't accommodate the composting/Bokashi-ing of all of it's own green waste?
Elderly people might find it difficult but there is great potential there for 'helpful communities' to develop around the process of returning food scraps and 'green waste' to the soils of city properties.
bsprout said…
Of course it's possible for everyone to compost, perhaps rather than city wide solutions, street communities could manage their own greenwaste.
robertguyton said…
Local solutions bsprout.
That's the way foward.
There's always a danger with centralising services and looking for one-size-fits-all answers.
What happens is, that those who do wish to attend to their own 'issue' are hampered or prevented from doing so by a central agency that needs total buy-in to fund their system.
Red tape galore!

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