Public invited to take part in West Lothian solar compactor bin trial

A number of solar compactor bins have been installed at locations across West Lothian as part of a trial looking at ways to reduce the potential for litter in public spaces.

By Kevin Quinn
Monday, 6th December 2021, 11:44 am
Updated Monday, 6th December 2021, 11:44 am
West Lothian Council operational services manager Andy Johnston joined Executive councillor for the environment, Tom Conn, at the site of one the new compactor bins next to Linlithgow Loch.
West Lothian Council operational services manager Andy Johnston joined Executive councillor for the environment, Tom Conn, at the site of one the new compactor bins next to Linlithgow Loch.

The bins monitor the amount of waste placed within them before self-compacting once they reach a certain level. This solar powered technology is designed to maximise the storage capacity of each bin.

This should reduce the potential for the bins to overflow, especially during peak periods in tourist hotspots . This along with the fact that the bins are also closed unless being used should remove the chances of birds and other wildlife spreading the waste.

The trial is part of West Lothian Council’s “Litter Policy and Litter Bin Plan” which was submitted to the Environment Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel in June 2021.

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The plan outlined a requirement to standardise all bins within West Lothian and also proposed the use of new technology to monitor and evidence litter bin usage. This trial could help officers identify potentials to improve the efficiency of public bin locations.

Members of the public are being invited to help assess the success of the solar compactor bins by completing a short survey.

The survey can be accessed via a QR code on the top of each bin.

This data will help officers assess the effectiveness of the technology and determine their ongoing use to help meet the council’s objectives of decreasing litter in public spaces.

The bins are currently in place across West Lothian, including two at Linlithgow Loch.

Executive councillor for the environment Tom Conn said: “West Lothian Council remains committed to reducing instances of littering wherever possible. The technological features of the solar compacting bins will hopefully make a positive impact with the real-time feedback providing officers accurate data to assess whether the location of public bins is appropriate.

“To help determine whether these bins will play a role in the future of the litter bin strategy I would encourage everyone to take the time to provide their feedback via the survey which can be accessed by scanning the QR code on one of the bins or by visiting the council website.”