Saturday, August 02, 2008

Redbridge Rubbish

a dust cartSome time back [12th June 2008 to be precise] I was at the London School of Economics for a talk on Europe’s role in improving London’s environment. One of the audience cited a newspaper report [which I have not been able to confirm] which said that the new London Mayor is having a thorough review of the London Development Agency’s budget [good] with a view to cutting out the soft options of job creation [good] and green initiatives [bad].

This prompted Chris Church to remind me that Redbridge Council called in the Carbon Trust back in the summer of 2006 and that the initial findings were reported here in January 2007, 18 months ago. So, what has been happening since?

Last year [2007] our council did a major review of the way our Waste Collection vehicles organise their rounds with a view to making them more efficient. This does not just save on CO2 emissions, it also saves petrol/diesel, wear and tear on the vehicles so they last longer, reduces road congestion and vehicle pollution meaning better air quality.

So, I have been trying to find out how much has been saved, money wise, I’m a council tax payer you know! This has proved rather difficult. It seems that the data is not comparable, since despite changing the rounds, they have also changed the collection frequency (e.g. weekly recycling collection). This does not seem to me to be a major mathematical challenge, however I am told that comparable data will not be available for a little while, but the issue will be raised at the officer Environmental Management Team as it will be needed to support any reporting on carbon reductions achieved.

Pah! Now you’d think that any financial savings would be “highlighted”. But maybe, just maybe, it’s because it took Green pressure to get this to happen and while Government and Local Authorities are always talking about cutting out waste it never seems to deliver unless they are forced to do it through some other enabler.

Don’t want those “hippies” getting the credit do we?


  1. Hardly a mathematical challenge at all B21 unless, of course, the person concerned failed the SATs test......

    Now if they genuinely can't manage to compare the detail from fairly simple data then what confidence can we have that there is some wunderkind capable of making valid comparisons between the two forms of "Conversation" replies where we know that there is a £70-millions discrepancy between the two sets of figures. Still, as those of us who attended Area 3 know, it will cause no problem: somebody from the council's propaganda department gave us the assurance.

    They have no problems working out what the council wants. It's when you and I ask for something that it becomes damned near impossible!

  2. There are now 5 -yes five versions of "The Conversation"
    1. the first on line version with the wrong figures
    2. the corrected version of the online version
    3 the Paper version with the wrong figures
    4 the Paper version with the correct? figure
    5 the Schools version- to be kept separate but probably some with the correct figure and some with the wrong figure.
    And no doubt they are going to foist on us some very dubious statistical analysis, to confirm what the Cabinet wants, As a matter of interest I managed to complete it with a surplus and no land sales except the 14 million for commercial property sales. I dont think I was meant to do that!

    I thought that Redbridge Rubbish was a very apt thread in which to discuss "The Conversation"


  3. I wonder what extra has these "corrected documents" cost?

  4. Well judging by my experience, absolutely nothing because the have not been changed, at an Allotment Forum meeting at the Town Hall we were presented with unaltered paper versions, the explanation was

    "As we've said, leaflets were already printed and distributed. The content in libraries was in ringbinders and individual sheets were easily changed"

    One might ask how they got in ringbinders, the certainly were not delivered like that surely?
    so individual sheets were not easily changed at the Town Hall?

    Spin Spin Spin and not even convincing spin.


  5. Dopeyf. Are you saying that the council werre still dishing out incorrect forms, even after it was made public and some time after the council commented on thiose "errors".