More efficient waste collection which adapts to each neighbourhood

The new cleaning contract, which comes into force in the autumn of 2020, is a key part of the municipal zero-waste strategy for the city. The new contract for managing cleaning and waste disposal is more flexible, more transparent and better adapted to the needs of each neighbourhood. The full council has approved a new cleaning contract for the next ten years, with votes from the municipal government, the Grup Municipal Demòcrata, the ERC and the independent councillors Gerard Ardanuy and Juanjo Puigcorbé.

26/10/2018 16:03 h

Ajuntament de Barcelona

The cleaning contract is one of the most important of all municipal contracts due to its duration of eight years, with an option of extending it for a further two, and because of its value, worth 307 million euros a year. In a bid to gain greater public control of this externally managed service, the new contract includes social, environmental and transparency measures to open up the data generated for use by the public, while the number of workers will also be increased by 225 a year. The contract comes into force in the autumn of 2020.

To make waste collection and management more efficient, the new cleaning contract will adapt to the urban characteristics and uses of the different neighbourhoods, with measures to improve the existing service. The goals of the zero-waste strategy are, on one hand, to reduce the generation of waste by the public from 1.3 kg per head per day down to 1.2 kg, and on the other hand, to increase selective waste collection from 36% to 60%.

Main new features of the contract

  1. Flexibility and adaptation to uses of public space in the neighbourhoods. The new cleaning system combines different types of cleaning, such as road sweeping, water jets etc., and waste collection according to needs, the time of year, uses of public space and the characteristics of each neighbourhood.
  2. Waste containers grouped together and accessible. Priority will be given to grouping waste containers together in the same place, making them accessible for everyone and promoting selective waste disposal. The collection model will keep the same five categories currently used, with more capacity for yellow containers as recipients for metal and all types of plastics. Historical quarters with less containers will get alternative selective waste systems.
  3. Technological features in containers. New technological elements will be added to gain information on the use of containers and to improve waste collection and management. In the mid-term, these will also help promote recycling among the public.
  4. Less emissions and less noise. To improve environmental quality, priority will be given to a fleet of zero-emissions and electric vehicles to reduce noise, particularly at night.
  5. Progressive roll-out of door-to-door waste collection. This system is currently in place in the old quarter in Sarrià. Depending on the degree of complexity involved, an evaluation will be made of areas in the city where the system can be introduced, as well as alternative waste collection systems to complement areas with fewer containers. Commercial door-to-door waste collection will also be increased by 1,000 establishments which generate organic waste.
  6. Application of social criteria in procurement. The new contract must include a plan for equal opportunities and non-discrimination against LGBTI people. Checks will also be made on the plan for subcontracting third parties, paying attention to payment terms, conditions, prices etc. At least 10% of the new contracts will be for companies from the social economy.


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