Local Government has an important role to play in improving the environment, most notably in facilitating and encouraging waste recycling. In Leighton Buzzard, we have kerbside collection of recyclable domestic waste (cardboard, tin cans, paper) and of green garden waste.
Later this year we will see the introduction of food waste collection. I will also be pushing for CBC to introduce glass recycling in the south of Central Beds to bring us in line with north Central Beds.
In addition to kerbside collection, CBC recently renovated the Leighton Buzzard ‘tidy tip’, and opened a new waste recycling facility at Thorn Turn. These much improved facilities make it easier for local residents to responsibly dispose of waste that is not collected at the kerbside.
Central Bedfordshire currently recycles 46% of its waste, with a target of 50% by 2020. I am optimistic that we will reach this target by the end of the year.
CBC is committed to working with Schools to help them reduce their carbon footprint, and across all CBC buildings various energy saving measures are being introduced to improve efficiency, including installing LED lights, solar panels and better boiler controls.
Local Councils also have an important role to play in providing green spaces in our built up areas. Not only are these good for the environment but for our mental wellbeing too.
I am delighted with the standard of the parks in Leighton Buzzard. The Town Council has achieved Green Flag standards for Parsons Rec and Pages Park in LB South, and Linslade Rec and Vandyke Road cemetery. I hope we can see similar standards achieved elsewhere in the town.
Notwithstanding the fact that it would have been better if the green belt around the town had been left undeveloped, I am keen to ensure that green spaces are included within these developments. The new development to the east of the town includes a commitment for a large country park and for several children’s play areas.
I would support any measures to improve cycle routes around the town, with secure storage for bikes in the town centre and at all Council owned buildings.