Ealing Council launches recycling reward programme
Ealing Council has partnered up with Greenreedem, a subsidiary of waste management firm Grundon, to introduce a recycling rewards programme for its residents.
The scheme from Greenredeem will allow 130,000 households in the west London borough to earn points for recycling and other 'green actions' in order to boost local recycling rates and secure grants for local community projects.
Residents need to register to the system and are awarded ten points for reporting what they have recycled each week, the accrued points - worth up to £70 annually - can be exchanged for discounts and offers. They can redeem points for discounts at more than 100 national retail outlets such as Marks & Spencer and Cineworld.
They can also donate points to local community projects, which can be turned into cash grants. There are ten Ealing projects seeking such support from the scheme launch.
It will also benefit local businesses, who have joined the incentives programme such as Toni & Guy, Harris and Hoole, Tranquility, London Bike Hub and Gurnell and Northolt Leisure Centres.
This will be Greenredeem's fifth scheme implemented in the UK. It has other schemes running at the London Borough of Lambeth, Halton Borough Council, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead and Wokingham Borough Council.
Speaking to edie.net at the official launch in London, Ealing Council leader Julian Bell said: "I think this is a real opportunity for a real step change in terms of the amount that our residents will recycle in the borough.
"We do pretty well but we have still got a long way to go to our 50% recycling target by 2020. We are currently at 43% at the moment. We need things like the Greenreedem reward scheme to motivate people to recycle and to focus their minds on recycling and I think this does it very well.
"I think for the wider good of the planet, everybody has to think about recycling more. In terms of council finances, we cannot afford as a council, given financial pressures that we are under and these austere times to keep paying the increasing amounts that we are to put waste into landfill."
Greenreedem spokesman Rob Crumbie added: "We have been having an exciting year. Since we spilt from the Recyclebank business in the US last April, when Recyclebank sold its UK arm to Grundon under the Greenreedem banner, we've had a fantastic opportunity to really look at proposition and develop more for the UK market. This has given us opportunities to establish community projects and focus on building on local relationships."
When asked if people could cheat the self-reporting system, Bell said:"The experience of Greenredeem where they have implemented this system shows that people tend not to do it. You can only report once a week and you can only get a limited number of points."