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Lib Dems unveil budget plans for greener Leeds

February 23, 2016 11:59 PM

Leeds's opposition Lib Dem council group will introduce glass and food waste collections and build an anaerobic digester under budget proposals due to be debated tomorrow (Wednesday 24th February).

Under the group's plan, 120,000 households will receive a monthly glass waste collections and the existing food waste pilot operating in Rothwell will be expanded to the whole of the city.

They will also build an anaerobic digester which will process the food waste and produce bio-methane gas, which can be used to power the council's own refuse vehicles, burnt to provide residential heat and power, or fed into the national gas grid. This will save the council money on fuel it currently buys from external suppliers.

This will be paid for by a pay freeze for senior staff earning over £30,000, a one year freeze in salary increments to staff and the removal of subsidies for trade union officials.

Lib Dem group leader Cllr Stewart Golton (Lib Dem, Rothwell) said:

"People are desperate for better recycling collections and introducing glass and food recycling would be a major upgrade in an area in which we've lagged behind other cities for a long time.

"An anaerobic digester will have huge benefits for the city. As well as providing somewhere for the council to process residents' food waste, we can also use the methane it creates to power our own refuse vehicles. It's an investment in the future that will make Leeds cleaner and greener and ultimately save us money.

"This investment will be paid for by cutting the wasteful half million pound annual subsidy for trade unions and temporarily freezing pay for the most senior staff. This still protects wage increases for lower paid staff.

"Times are tough but we still need the vision to invest in our infrastructure so we can save in the long term."