Wednesday, July 9, 2014
Seaton’s new solar-powered waste containers will automatically compact rubbish so they can hold more
‘Big Belly’ bins are set to gobble up the rubbish at Seaton.
Seven of the jumbo-sized waste containers have been installed along the seafront.
They are amongst 21 that have been leased by East Devon District Council for its coastal resorts.
They have a number of benefits – one being that they largely pay for themselves.
A spokesman explained that the costs of the lease agreement will be offset by savings on agency and staff overtime due to a significant reduction in the number of times the bins need to be emptied and by greater operational efficiency.
Among the other plus points of the Big Belly bins are:
• They compact the litter inside so they can hold eight times as much waste as East Devon’s ageing stock of conventional wheelie-type bins.
• The compactor machinery is solar powered, so it needs no electricity supply.
• Because the Big Belly holds more waste, the seafront ends up less cluttered with waste containers.
• The bins have a closed access point, which stops gulls from pilfering contents like fish and chip wrappers and strewing them over the footpath.
• Big Belly bins don’t need emptying so often, so EDDC can re-invest staff time saved into other street cleansing work.
• The new bins can also carry static messaging panels. In time there will also be wi-fi hotspot access, so EDDC can communicate with residents and visitors about council services or resort attractions.
• Advertising revenue may also help in partially covering the cost of the bins, reducing council outlay still further.
Councillor Iain Chubb, EDDC’s Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “This new type of bin is a very exciting departure for East Devon because they have so many benefits rolled into one deal. Not only do they reduce the amount of street furniture but they also limit scavenging by gulls and other pests.
“Cutting edge technology means that the bins use solar power to drive the compacting ram and there is also a chance for us to communicate with our customers through static or wi-fi advertising. “In many cases the bins will start paying for themselves from Day One. In these austere times, the ability to improve the service without increasing our overall budget is a definite win-win.”