Councillor Peter Holland was invited to view the work of the Matford Recovery Facility at Marsh Barton. The initiative was launched to raise awareness about the benefits of recycling.
Peter said: The tour explained the primary purpose of the three different collections made by the City Council, highlighting the percentages of waste sent for recycling, land fill and composting, also giving a bin analysis of what is commonly found in the grey/black bins of Exeter. As a City, Exeter recycles some 35% of its waste and with a target of 50% on the horizon is always exploring ways to improve its rate. Some parts of the City are better at recycling than others with Stoke Hill and Pennsylvania recycling 30% of its waste. The financial implications for the City are immense, with food grade plastic selling for up to £350 per tonne, aluminium for £825 per tonne and clear glass for £18 per tonne to name but a few. The downside, of course, is the cost of ‘land fill’ which is £113 per tonne.
Clearly this locally run service has enabled the Council to underpin its essential services with the income generated from the recycling process. The financial rewards are easily recognised but it must not be forgotten that environmental implications are equally important. Recycling one 2 litre plastic bottle can save enough energy to power a light bulb for one hour!