British trash-fee hike to help recycling

Feb. 10, 2007 at 2:20 PM
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LONDON, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- Downing Street is recommending that British families be charged an additional 120 pounds ($234) annually for household trash pickup.

The Telegraph reported Saturday that the variable charging scheme, which is on top of the taxes already paid for trash hauling, could cut waste volume by about 10 percent. Government advisers say the move would encourage recycling, since there would be no charge for the collection of glass, plastic, cardboard and paper set out separately from the garbage.

Several areas in England have already taken the plunge by introducing a trash can equipped with microchips that weighs its contents; however, critics are warning that additional "rubbish" fees will only anger families, particularly large families, who have seen their tax bills rise by a whopping 80 percent in the past 10 years.

Eric Pickles, the shadow local government minister, told the BBC: "There is already massive public resentment at the way working families and pensioners are being punished by punitive levels of council tax. Now every household in Britain faces the prospect of new rubbish taxes on top."

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