Lambeth performs well in new carbon-based recycling league table.

July 3, 2015

For many years recycling percentage has been used to compare the performance of local authorities. Performance is based on the weight of the waste local authorities reuse, recycle or compost/digest as a percentage of the total weight of waste produced.

However Ricardo-AEA, a global sustainability consultancy, has developed the first full UK local authority waste management league table based on carbon emission factors. They argue that a better reflection of environmental benefit is to look at the global warming potential based on the disposal method of each material collected.

We’re really pleased to see that under this measure Lambeth rank 57th out of a total of 433 UK local authorities.

The analysis takes into account the end process for residual waste (rubbish) and councils that no longer send this waste to landfill perform far better than those that do. Landfilling material that degrades underground has a significant carbon impact of +463 kg per tonne.

No waste from Lambeth has been landfilled since August 2011. All rubbish collected in the borough is sent by river to an Energy from Waste plant in Belvedere. Once there, the waste is burned at high temperature generating electricity for up to 100,000 homes.

Find out more about rubbish and recycling in Lambeth on our website.

Free collections of furniture and electrical items in Lambeth

April 24, 2015

Emmaus.If you have furniture or white goods that you no longer need, you may be able to arrange a free collection through one of Lambeth’s reuse charities.

Emmaus Lambeth provide a home and work to 54 previously homeless people at their centre in West Norwood. They support this work through the collection and resale of household items at their shops across the borough. Free collections of furniture, white goods and electrical items can be arranged by visiting their website or calling 020 8761 4276. All items must be in a suitable condition for resale.

The British Heart Foundation also provide a free collection of furniture and large and small electrical items for resale in their Brixton shop. You can arrange a collection online or call 0808 250 0030.

If you have transport, Smugglers Way Household waste and Recycling Centre also accepts good quality furniture and electrical items for reuse. Any items not suitable for resale will be recycled. White goods and electrical items can also be taken to Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre.

Have you visited Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre recently?

April 17, 2015

Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre, in West Norwood accepts a wide range of material for recycling and reuse. From garden waste, fridges and televisions to bicycles and carpet, you can dispose of your unwanted items free of charge at the centre knowing that anything suitable will be reused and what can’t be reused will be recycled.

What can I take to Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre?

Vale St list

The site is open on weekends and Bank Holidays (excluding Christmas) and there are staff on site at all times.

Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre

Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre

As well as improving the range of materials we accept, we have also made a number of changes to site to make it easier, more pleasant and safer to use. Signage has been updated, road markings have been improved and all large containers and staircases have been replaced.

Two green roofs have been installed on our reused shipping container and welfare unit and a area has been set aside as a small wildlife garden.

Bug habitats in the wildlife garden

Bug habitats in the wildlife garden

Green roof on our shipping container

Green roof on our shipping container

You can find full details of the site on our main website.

A Merry Christmas from Lambeth Environment!

December 19, 2014

This will be our last post for 2014, so there’s just time to say a big thank you for reading, we hope you’ve enjoyed our posts and we hope you’ll stay with us for 2015!

Recycling and waste at Christmas

Our collection days are changing slightly over the festive period, so make sure you don’t miss yours. Also find out where you can recycle your Christmas tree.

Even with the very best intentions most of us create extra waste over Christmas, so here are some tips to help reduce the amount you throw away.


Judging how much food to buy, especially if you are catering for more than usual, can be difficult. The Love Food Hate Waste Portion Planner will help you to buy and cook the right amount – preventing waste and saving you money. They also have some great recipes for using up leftovers from Christmas dinner.

For any food that can’t be eaten e.g. bones, remember to use the food waste collection service!

Wrapping paper

As a nation, we use tonnes of it every year and most of it goes straight into the recycling bin.

Instead of using wrapping paper, you could also wrap gifts in newspaper. With a bit of creativity, they can look really lovely!


You can also wrap your presents in fabric. The technique which originated in Japan, is called Furushiki. Large square scarfs are perfect and can then be worn by the recipient.

Get crafty

Just search recycled Christmas decorations online and you’ll find hundreds of really great ideas!

Here are a couple of my favourites!

cork tree

Cork Christmas Tree











Wreath made from recycled Christmas cards


















There’s no limit to the amount you can put out for collection in your clear sack or shared recycling bin. So remember to recycle everything you can!

Sign up to receive our weekly Green Community Champion e-newsletter

November 21, 2014

GreenField_jpgWould you like to receive a weekly update of all that’s green in Lambeth? We’ve put together a weekly e-newsletter which is a round up of local events, projects, vacancies, meetings, courses and good news stories.

We are also really happy to receive submissions for the newsletter, so if you are looking for volunteers for your project, would like to advertise your local group or tell us about something you’re working on to make your neighbourhood greener, then please drop us a line at

Surprising recycling – some of the more unusual items we’ve found!

October 31, 2014
Recycling bin full of bread!

Recycling bin full of bread!

Every day we collect tonnes of good quality recycling from households in Lambeth. Most of it is sent straight to our recycling facility in Wandsworth where it is sorted and sent on for recycling.

Unfortunately, sometimes we find clear sacks and estate recycling bins that contain items they shouldn’t. If we’re lucky, we notice this before it is emptied into the collection vehicle. Depending on how bad the contamination is, we can then ask the rubbish crews to collect it or in the case of clear sacks, we can leave a sticker which asks the householder to remove the unwanted items.

Sometimes, the contamination finds its way to our Recycling Facility which causes real problems. Contamination that is removed from recycling has to be disposed of as rubbish, meaning that we pay for disposal twice. Contamination such as food waste affects the quality of other materials, particularly paper. Shredded paper and small bottle tops also cause problems for the sorting machinery.

The most common non-recyclable items we find are food waste and polysterene; however over the years the following have also turned up at our Recycling Facility:

  • a dead squid
  • car jack
  • a whole pig’s leg complete with trotter
  • a safe
  • a large suitcase
  • a whole chicken
  • a gas meter

Spare a thought for the men and women who work at the start of the process to remove non-recyclable items by hand!

We are currently working to lock some of our estate bins to prevent large non-recyclable items from being placed inside and regularly send out communications to remind people what is and isn’t recyclable.

Here’s a full list of items that can be recycled in your clear sack or estate recycling bin and our A-Z should help you with some of the more unusaul items.

Free trips to the recycling centre for Lambeth school children

September 5, 2014
Recycling being sorted by machine

Recycling being sorted by machine

A trip to our transfer station and recycling facility is great way to help children learn about looking after their environment. Your pupils (and staff) can see what happens to what they throw away, and learn why it is so important to reduce, reuse and recycle their own waste.
Children can see and feel recycled materials, get ideas for their own recycling crafts, and have a go at sorting rubbish themselves. They can then watch recycling being sorted by machine into different materials.
Outside they can view our cranes loading 12 tonne containers of black bag rubbish onto barges on the Thames, ready to be transported for burning to generate electricity. They can also meet our composting worms.

New for 2014/15 – you can extend your visit with a hands on recycling session, each child can make their own piece of recycled paper to take home!

Previous visitors have really enjoyed the sessions!

“the children said it was the smelliest trip but the best – high praise indeed”

“the children (and adults) had a fantastic time and came back to school full of new information and lots of ideas on how we can promote the 3 Rs.”

Visits are FREE but must be booked in advance. Please email or call on 020 88758885/9 to make a booking.
For more information visit the WRWA website.