Joint work on waste will ‘save cash’

Neighbouring local authorities working together to provide waste services could deliver more cost-effective services, according to Government.

A new consultation paper published by ministers details options for how Joint Waste Authorities (JWAs) will work.

Any group of two or more authorities will be able to apply to Government to voluntarily transfer waste collection, disposal and street cleaning to a JWA.

“Joint working on waste is becoming increasingly important, to help authorities to invest in new, sustainable waste facilities more cost effectively,” said waste minister Joan Ruddock.

“Authorities are already developing innovative ways of working with their neighbours to improve their waste services.

“Joint waste authorities can provide local authorities with an additional option for working together – one that will allow them to put their partnership on a statutory footing.”

The Local Government Association said the important factor was that it will be up to local authorities to decide whether to form JWAs.

A spokesperson told edie: “It is down to councils to work out how they want to go about disposing of their rubbish and if there are benefits to be gained from joining JWAs, that’s great, and if there are not, they won’t join them.

“Councils will decide what works best for them to deliver the best services for residents.”

Powers to form JWAs were introduced in the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act in 2007 in response to requests from local authorities.

Funding of £500,000 has been made available for 2008-09 to help local authorities develop proposals for JWAs.

The consultation papers can be found here and responses to the consultation have to be submitted by June 9 to [email protected]

More information on JWAs can be found here.

Kate Martin

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie