Johnson plans to reward London recyclers

January 29, 2010 at 4:01 pm

London is one of the lowest-ranked major cities in the world when it comes to recycling levels, but that could all be about to change if Mayor Boris Johnson gets his way. He is backing a new scheme to improve recycling rates across the city and bin London’s poor reputation.

Named ‘Recycle Bank’, the scheme has already proved popular in the United States and Johnson is hoping the success will be mirrored here. As part of the scheme, households are given shopping vouchers based on how much they recycle at home, or they can choose to donate the money to charity instead. Johnson said that this would lead to about £14 per month extra coming into most households.

The mayor wants London to be on the same level as other major cities when it comes to recycling household waste. It currently has the lowest rates of recycling in England, and only about a quarter of the rubbish produced is currently recycled.

One of most important things for Johnson is to get more of the people living in flats and multi-occupancy buildings to recycle, especially when it comes to food waste. Currently half the homes in London fit this description, and this obviously presents its own challenges as they do not have gardens in which to compost their waste.

If the new scheme takes off and proves to be a success, it will form part of a larger plan for the Mayor who wants to save £90 million a year through greater investment in green technology and better recycling across the city.

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