Green campaigners in Kirklees say the council’s crackdown on rubbish has led to an additional 45-85 tonnes of waste being recycled every week.
It follows the launch of a council campaign to help residents understand what can and can not go in their green bin .
Since April advisers have been accompanying refuse crews to check the contents of green bins in South Kirklees.
They will continue to do so until May 25. From May 27 to July 26 they will focus on North Kirklees.
They will be joined by ward councillors.
A yellow sticker is placed on bins containing any wrong items. Advisers then contact households before the next scheduled bin collection to explain why a sticker was given and what needs to happen to address this.
But the scheme has not proved popular with residents , some of whom have had their green bins confiscated.
The council has been accused to using advisors to “snoop” on people’s recycling , and of not being upfront about seizing bins.
Residents can apply to have their bins returned after six months.
The leader of the Green group on Kirklees Council, Clr Andrew Cooper, said he and his colleagues would not be assisting advisers.
“We are more than happy to help householders who have had their bins taken away to see what we can do to get them replaced.
“That’s a better use of our time.
“We are not going to be rifling through people’s bins. If Labour councillors want to do that then that’s up to them.”
Commenting on social media, people made their feelings clear:
Debbie Crawford: “I got a yellow sticker on mine this week due to someone placing a packet of pancake in the top of it maybe on their way past. God knows.”
Alison Chambers: “Kirklees’ new recycling initiative: take your green bin away so you can’t recycle so it all goes in grey bin. Well done Kirklees for being dumbest council again.”
Anthoney Swiffen: “Can’t recycle now. Well done Kirklees.”
Rachel Murray: “It would be helpful if the council said what was in there and not allowed when they send these letters. It’ll help those who don’t have the internet to check.”
Sheila Rodd: “I’ve got CCTV on our binmen physically taking rubbish out and looking through the bins. Even shows the guy reading stuff from my bin!”
Mary Majella: “I am very careful about what I put in my green bin but I live on a main road and can’t stop passers-by using my bins for their rubbish as it is near a number of takeaways . I too received a notification from the council about my green bin. So unfair when you have no control over the actions of others.”
The council says its crackdown aims to improve Kirklees’ recycling rate which, at 27%, falls well below the national average of 45%.
And whilst recycling rate figures are not yet available for the six-week period since the campaign was launched it says early indications are “very positive”.
Recycling an extra 45-85 tonnes a week means the waste is not sent to landfill or to be burnt.
Clr Naheed Mather (Lab, Dalton), the council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Environment, said the authority’s recycling rates were “simply not good enough” and that it must do better.
She said the council took recycling and how its deal with waste “very seriously”.
She added: “Some households are unsure of what can and cannot go in a green bin so this exercise will help to clear up any misunderstandings.
“Items such as soiled nappies, food waste, glass and black bin liners should never be placed in a green bin.
“If an item which cannot be recycled is placed in the green bin, the whole load becomes contaminated and is rejected, meaning it has to be treated as general waste.”
Since February more than 10,000 households have signed up for Kirklees Council’s new brown bin garden waste collection service.
The first bin collections will start at the end of May. The authority says the take-up has been “huge”.
Households can sign up for the garden service online at a cost of £37.50 for one year’s collection of one bin.
Kirklees Passport holders will receive a 20% discount off the price. Those signing up will receive a brown bin for fortnightly collections of garden waste between February and November.