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City shines in litter test despite the blackspots

posted 21 Nov 2008, 05:53 by myEdinburgh Admin   [ updated 21 Nov 2008, 05:55 ]
The streets of Edinburgh have received one of their best-ever cleanliness ratings from inspectors, despite some areas of the city continuing to lag behind.

Keep Scotland Beautiful awarded Edinburgh a score of 68 under the Cleanliness Index Monitoring System (CIMS), the best September result achieved since the surveys began in 2000.

The organisation said 89 per cent of the city's streets were "clean"
following the inspection in September.

However, a number of areas of the city are continuing to fall below the "acceptable" score of 67, with Leith Walk in particular picking up a score of just 59.

The inspectors said that the council wards of Forth, Sighthill/Gorgie, Meadows/Morningside, the city centre, Leith Walk, Leith and Craigentinny/Duddingston had all failed to meet the minimum cleanliness rating.

Councillor Robert Aldridge, the city's environment leader, said: "This is the best score the city has received for September since the surveys began and it is important to compare equivalent seasons.

"Although these scores do show a slight dip since the last survey in June, improvements are being made, particularly in the north of the city which saw a three-point increase."

He added: "We are determined to improve our ratings throughout the whole city and are listening to the views of local communities to help us pinpoint problem areas."

The quarterly independent assessment is described as a "snapshot" of the cleanliness of a sample of streets over a four-week period.

The inspectors examined a 50 metre section in ten per cent of the city's streets and graded them from A to D, where A represents no litter and D represents "major accumulations".

A report going before the council's transport, infrastructure and environment committee says the number of streets being given a D grade has fallen below one per cent of all those surveyed. The most common types of litter are discarded cigarettes and fast food containers.

Jeff Halkett, of Keep Scotland Beautiful, said: "Keep Scotland Beautiful are delighted that the year-on-year cleanliness figures for September have shown a trend of overall improvement.

"We will continue to work in partnership with Edinburgh City Council to maintain and improve on cleanliness standards.

"The continued monitoring through the quarterly CIMS surveys will allow further improvements to be made, in delivering a clean city for residents, businesses and tourists alike."

Last month it emerged that the number of calls to the Capital's street cleaning services had risen by 47 per cent over the last year to almost 200 a month. The council also recorded a big jump in complaints about rubbish being dumped next to wheelie bins, rising more than six-fold from 353 in 2004 to 2371 last year. The increase was put down to the council's controversial decision to introduce special uplift charges last year.


Source: Edinburgh Evening News