A SCHEME encouraging residents to recycle cooking oil has proved a success, creating enough energy in a year to make two million cups of tea.
Eco firm Living Fuels, which turns the oil into environmentally-friendly electricity for the National Grid, praised people for taking their oil to waste recycling sites, including the ones in Shoreham and Horsham.
The firm presented a certificate to West Sussex County Council and recycling partner Viridor, which jointly launched the recycling scheme in June 2012.
Ian Collins, Living Fuels’ managing director, said: “We’re really excited at how well West Sussex residents have taken to our used cooking oil scheme, proving that people do care about responsibly recycling waste.
“The certificate that we’ve presented to the council is just our way of saying ‘thanks for a job well done’ to everyone in the area that has gotten behind the scheme.”
The project was put together to make residents aware of the benefits recycling used cooking oil can have for the environment.
Cllr David Barling, deputy cabinet member for waste minimisation, said: “This is a really great initiative and I’m pleased to see that people in West Sussex have taken to it so enthusiastically.
“It shows that people will recycle if they are provided with the means to do so.”
However, despite the success of the scheme, a recent YouGov poll found nearly a quarter of residents had not changed their habits.
Mr Collins said: “Around 80 per cent of the UK population is within a 15-minute drive of a waste cooking oil recycling site – among the best coverage in world.
“The bad news is that the hard core of 24 per cent of adults in Steyning and Shoreham are still putting waste cooking oil down the drain – it hasn’t budged.
“We will not rest until every British householder appreciates their old cooking oil is a precious resource, knows where to recycle it and adopts the ‘stop and think, not down the sink’ habit. Not only will they avoid costly drain blockage repairs but they’ll also be doing their bit to build a sustainable source of energy.”
The poll also found 59 per cent of adults in Steyning and Shoreham mistakenly believed a water company picked up the bill for blocked drains on their premises.