Pay by weight Bin Charges were originally due to become compulsory in Ireland from July 1st 2016 – but they were suspended for a year after worries over bin charge price increases. The move to a nationwide pay-by-weight scheme for bins was not very popular, mainly because of concerns of some that it would increase charges. After just a few days of pressure – the government gave in and agreed with the bin companies to suspend the introduction of pay by weight charging for 12 months until July 2017 .
The Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources is undertaking a review of pricing structures for household waste collection. The review is looking at the possible future pricing structures to incentivise the prevention and segregation of household waste.
Note : Whilst the current charging system will remain in place, until July 2017 – householders will have the option to switch to the pay-by-weight system before then.
The new legislation on bin charges was due to come into force on July 1st 2016 – and it was supposed to result in people paying less if they produce less waste . At least 20% of households in Ireland already have bin charges based on pay-per-weight.
The compulsory charging by weight method will hopefully encouragedmore recycling and reduce the amount of waste going into landfill. Some people would have ended up paying less under the proposed 2016 charges – especially if they recycled more and put less waste in the black bins. But it seems that many others would have paid more – mainly those who already recycled a lot or have a small amount of waste. These people would have been hit by increased fixed annual service charges.
Faced with a potential loss of income if people disposed of less waste – it appears that some bin companies adjusted their charging methods to try and maintain income levels. Many of them increased their service charges drastically.
One benefit of the proposed new pay by weight charging system is that people will be able put their bins out as often as they want and they will not be charged any more (in most cases) . So people will no longer have to put up with bins full of a month’s worth of stinking rubbish outside the door .
Most bin companies will not be charging anything for the recycling bins – so some people could reduce their overall bin charges by increasing the amount they recycle – thus reducing the weight in the standard waste bin (black).
In July 2016 Minimum by weight charges were going to be set at the following rates :
11c/kg for(standard non recyclable) – usually Black Bins
6c/kg for organic/food waste (usually a brown bin)
0c/kg for recycling bins (Usually green)
There were no maximum charges per kg set in the new legislation. (This may change in July 2017)
Note: If you live in a town with a population of over 500 – your bin provider is obliged to give you a brown bin for food waste and other organic waste. Food waste is typically the heaviest waste – so by putting all your food waste in the brown compost bin you will pay a lower charge than you would if you put it in with the general waste.
Waste is typically split into Black bins for general waste, Brown Bins for organic waste and Green bins for recycling. In Dublin these bin colours seem to be standard for all bin collectors. In some areas of the country they have different coloured bins.
Update May 2017
Greyhound started charging extra for black bin bags that exceed 42 kilograms (92 pounds) in May 2017 . Thay will charge 30 cent per kilo over the 42kg limit.
Panda have todl customers that new weight limit of 40 kilograms per black bin lift will come into effect from July for health and safety reasons. Thay say they will charge 27.7c per kg Over the 4oKg limit.
Bin Charges Compared July 2016 (These are the rates some of the bin companies were planning to charge before the suspension was announced )
Green recycling bins are all zero charge unless stated otherwise.
Thorntons €104 annual service charge . 35c per kg black bin and 20c per kg for brown bin
Greyhound €169 annual service charge 35c /kg for black bin ; 23c/kg brown bin. (They charge different prices for different areas)
Panda (Fingal) €86 Annual Charge ; Black bin €3.20 per lift plus 27c per kg ; Brown Bin €2.56 per lift plus 16c per kg
City Bin Dublin €155.48 service chg 20c/kg Black , 20c/Kg Brown
City Bin Athlone €180 Annual Service chg ; 26c/kg Black 16c/kg Brown
OR €120 Ann an 35c per KG 20c/kg Brown
Barna – Galway €144 annual charge ; Black Bin 19c per kg; Green Bin 8c per kg; Brown bin €0.10 per kg.
Barna (Mayo) Annual Charge €204 ; Black bin (General waste) 22c /kg ; Brown Bin (compost) 12c/kg
Ray Whelan (Carlow) Service Charge €168 ; Black bin 23c/kg ;Brown 16c/kg
Greenstar Cork – €234 annual service charge , Black Bin 18c /kg ; Brown bin 14c/kg
Greenstar Fingal €156 ann 33c/kg black bin , 20c/kg brown
Greenstar NW €100 ann , 35c /kg black , 20c/kg Brown ; 5c/kg recycling (green)
AES – €180- ann chg , 25c/kg black , 15c/kg brown
McGraths (Co Mayo) €352 annual charge – which includes 300kg of residual waste (black bin) After that they at charge 22 cent per KG.
When (if) everyone starts being charged by weight – there might be a few sneaky people who start dumping waste into other people’s bins to try and reduce their own bin charges. It will happen. You could buy one of these bin locks to stop that happening
There will probably be more roadside dumping of general waste and more garden burning of waste too – by people trying to to avoid these charges.
Will it Work ?
A national survey in 2010 comparing household waste found that on average – homes with a pay-by-weight bin charges put 800kg a year in their bins compared to 1294kg in pay-per-lift areas. This is a decrease of 38%.
The same survey also found that the average recycling rate for pay-by-weight households was 32% compared to just 20 or 21% for other charging methods. ref