A STAGGERING 140 tonnes of extra rubbish has been recycled in Basildon since weekly collections were introduced just a month ago.

Recycling rates in the borough have gone through the roof since the switch from fortnightly to weekly pink sack collections, on August 1.

Compared to the first two weeks of August last year, this equates to an extra 140.75 tonnes being picked up from the roadside and sent to the recycling depot at Barleylands.

The extra material, now being recycled instead of heading straight to landfill, has allowed the council to exceed its recycling target of 50 per cent two years ahead of schedule.

Malcolm Buckley, councillor responsible for the environment, welcomed the figures, saying he wants Basildon to be one of the most environmentally friendly boroughs in the country.

He said: “We are committed to helping residents recycle as much as possible, and now householders can recycle more than ever before. If Basildon is to become one of the greenest boroughs in the country, we will need every resident to do their bit.”

Pink sacks are now collected on the same day as green bins for garden and food waste, and non-recyclable rubbish.

The service has also been expanded to include long-life cartons, jar lids, metal bottle tops and aluminium foil.

Glass bottles and jars will continue to be picked up every two weeks.

Residents are being reminded their rubbish will be collected a day late next week because of the August Bank Holiday.

To check your collection day, visit www.basildon.gov.uk and click on Where I live.

A normal service will resume from Monday, September 5.