Edinburgh City Council is to add collections of plastic bottles and a trial of food waste to its kerbside household recycling routes.

The council has run recycling collections for many years, but has left out plastic bottles and food – which it believes have made up the vast majority of waste going to landfills.

Council chiefs, like many others around the country, face spiralling bills for landfill rising from £7million this year to £12million by 2014.

Plastic bottles collections are due to start early in 2011, while food waste collections will begin on a trial basis at the same time.

The once a week food waste pilot scheme will cover 20,000 households in the city centre and east areas of Edinburgh.

It’s estimated 20,000 tonnes of food waste is thrown out every year in Edinburgh and if the trial is successful it will be expanded to around 250,000 houses.

A consultation with residents in the World Heritage area will look into particular waste solutions best suited to their properties.

Robert Aldridge, the city council environmental leader, said: “Residents will actually see a difference in the level of service offered with more collections and much better provision of service.

“Food waste will be collected weekly and there will be more opportunity to recycle other household items.

“There is real potential for behavioural change. Lowering the amount of rubbish we send to landfill is everyone’s responsibility.

“It reduces waste, helps the environment and saves money. We want Edinburgh to be a great place to live in and visit and these pilots are part of that.”

Luke Walsh

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