Thursday, May 24, 2007

Where there's muck....


A bin, yesterday.

I suspect a lot of hot air (pun fully intended) will get generated over the latest thing by the councils - what with cameras in bins, and areas (mine included) going to fortnightly collection.
I now have three bins outside. One for garden waste (I have a patio courtyard), one for normal kitchen waste, and they are upgrading the orange bags to bins for my newspapers, light card, glossies and placky bottles.

I am fortunate to have fitted one of those machines to the sink that chews up food waste, flushing it harmlessly down my drains (I really should be very careful there - given the sensitivity of my local drainage). All in all this means I am very little affected by the changes. I live alone, don’t generate much waste and dispose of what I create sensibly.
Now a chap looks at this and thinks in two ways. One could get a bit heated and fulminate to the authorities and say that I am paying you for this. One would like to review the spreadsheets where they work out the likely volume drop in landfill, versus the tax increase. One suspects that there increase in tax, versus the likely drop is less than the money saved by alternate collections. That's what should come of my rates. This implies a single local monopoly as the government knows best what I need and determines how my services are provided and my acceptance that this is the right way.

Or….

The enterprising amongst us looks at the industrial waste removers, and think ' Hello - gap been created in the market'
I can see it now….'' We will Come and have your bin sanitised and emptied once a fortnight for a fee''. I am certain there is a margin between the £/tonne landfill tax, and the collection costs for such waste - versus the rate the market (us) will bear for having our bin emptied and sweetened. (Bins with Grins!!)

There could well be a boom in competitive local services, offering competition to local politicised monopolies (Councils). All that is necessary now is a quick switch to allow you to opt out of the services your council can provide but you can buy cheaper elsewhere. With the technology going in - it could easily be tweaked to manage account information so that your personal rubbish service only charges you for what you create. Even better- the Polluter pays. And there is a huge disincentive for your to be over productive with sprogs - as you have to bear the real cost of ownership, instead of it being carried by the state.

At a stroke - Domestic services have real local competition, things get efficient and we move to a beautiful sunlit uplands with empty bins.

I bet Cyclops and which ever of his running dogs thought this up didn't think it could end there.
As ever with the big statist solution to local problems - it is the unintended consequences which bring the most interest.

Oh I am sure those statist among you will insist that only the government know best how to empty your bins, or some stuff about it will 'exclude' those who can't afford private collections. Stuff, I say Stuff! Their bins get emptied now, do they not? Why should that change?
It is the same argument that water and food is too important to be left in the hands of grubby commercialists, and a nice fair Board of Supply will take care of you.

So in summary - I welcome the move!

PS: If you think competition is wrong - I don't suppose you remember the days when you had to queue up at the GPO shop to order a telephone, and wait three months for it to be delivered- or only being allowed to buy a fridge form your Electricity board shop.... it wasn't that long ago....

3 comments:

Kate said...

Look look look - clearly someone in North Yorks reads your blog!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/north_yorkshire/6703297.stm

Nicodemus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nicodemus said...

Indeed! I shoukld charge out my services for the wisdom i provide. Feel free to tell EVERYONE how clever I am!