Can-do attitude to raise extra money
THE tins and cans residents throw away could soon be used to generate extra income for Swindon Borough Council.
Swindon Commercial Services Ltd has applied to the council for a loan to buy a new can baler, which will allow more money to be gained from recycling.
The new machine has been budgeted to last for five years, over which time it could bring in around £1 million extra income.
A loan of £280,000 has been requested which will cover the value of the new machine.
James Owen, the commercial director at SCS, said: “Our last baler broke down in 2012. At the time the price of aluminium was very low so the numbers did not add up and it made no sense to get one.
“Since then, the price has risen and it now stands in between its peak and where it bottomed out so it makes much more sense.
“The numbers are much more in our favour so we are putting in now to take advantage of the market situation.”
As it stands, Swindon is not able to separate aluminium and steel so when they sell on the metal it only has a market value of around £169 per tonne.
However, aluminium currently has a market value in the region of £650 per tonne, while steel sells for about £125 per tonne.
Of the total amount of tins, around 70 per cent is steel while the rest is aluminium so there is high value in what is thrown out.
James said: “As it stands we are just sending the metal combined which is a much lower price. Someone else then separates the metals and can sell on the aluminium.
“So someone else is making the money which should be going to Swindon. There is a lot of value in the orange boxes people put out and we want to be able to harness that.
“Our last machine lasted for eight years but we are budgeting this one to last for five. We think there will be an annual income of £250,000 so that is about £1 milllion over that period and more if it lasts longer.
“No-brainer is a term which is used too often but for us this is a real no-brainer so we hope the loan gets approved.”
The decision will be made next week when the budget report goes before cabinet.