Oxfordshire top of national recycling table for 10 years in a row

For the 10th consecutive year, residents in Oxfordshire are the best in England for recycling, reusing, and composting.

Oxfordshire County Council has again been named the top performing county council waste disposal authority. In 2022 - 23, residents recycled, reused, or composted 57.2 per cent of their household waste, according to the latest government figures.

Councillor Pete Sudbury, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Environment, said: “We want to say congratulations and thank you to our residents for all their hard work and commitment in making it 10 in a row. It is quite an achievement.

“We have successfully kept our waste per household down, and the biggest area for improvement would be food waste. A lot of that is still not being recycled. Wasting less food is good for our wallets and for the planet, and the food waste we do recycle is anaerobically digested, making methane to replace fossil gas to heat our homes and cook our food.

“In tough times, we can all remember the old adage ‘waste not, want not’. Waste less food, keep items in use for longer and reduce the amount of rubbish we produce – which benefits everyone financially and environmentally.”

The total amount of household waste produced in Oxfordshire was 278,857 tonnes for 2022/23, with 159,732 tonnes being reused, recycled and composted.

In other good news, the overall amount of non-recyclable waste produced by each household in Oxfordshire dropped, as did the amount of waste sent to landfill.

Oxfordshire’s city and four district councils, which operate the kerbside collections for householders, also achieved excellent results in their national category.

Out of 210 waste collection authorities in England, South Oxfordshire District Council was top of the table (61.6 per cent), the Vale of White Horse was third (60.9 per cent), West Oxfordshire was 14th, Cherwell was 31st, while Oxford City Council was 49th.

Along with the county council, the city and district councils make up the Oxfordshire Resources and Waste Partnership (ORWP) – a collaborative partnership, which works together to improve recycling and waste management services for residents.

Vicky Beechey, Oxfordshire Resources and Waste Partnership (ORWP) Manager, said: “The sustained high performance by Oxfordshire local authorities is remarkable, particularly against a backdrop of challenging financial times for everyone. To see ORWP partners’ hard work continuing to be reflected in these figures is a strong indication of the commitment of those involved to deliver positive environmental outcomes and excellent services for Oxfordshire residents.

“ORWP partners recognise that there is more to do to improve recycling, reuse, and composting rates. We all have a role to play in maintaining and improving on how recycling and waste is managed correctly; using tools such as the Waste Wizard to help put the items we have in the right place – whether that’s for reuse, to repair or to throw away.”

Oxfordshire residents can now dispose of limited amounts of DIY waste for free at the county’s household waste recycling centres by using an online booking system.

The booking system, which was launched by Oxfordshire County Council earlier this year, means householders wanting to use their free DIY waste allocation will need to book in advance through the website.

For those looking to reduce their waste further, Oxfordshire’s Community Action Group network and Replenish project have lots of opportunities for people to get involved with local schemes and tips on how to reduce waste and improve their local environment.

Residents can also visit Climate Action Oxfordshire for ideas on the practical things they can do to reduce waste and make better climate choices with the time they have available. 

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