For the municipality of Vordingborg, Denmark, COWI prepared a report that was to act as decision-making basis for the new municipal waste scheme, which was sent out to EU tender in 2008.
Following the Danish reform of municipal structures, in which the municipality of Vordingborg was merged with three neighbouring municipalities, the household waste collection was to be harmonized across the municipality, which covers 46,000 inhabitants. Environment, economy and service
Based on the four municipalities' past experience, a user survey and own ideas, COWI outlined a number of suggestions for future schemes that had been assessed based on environmental impact studies, economy and service level.
The report on waste schemes in Vordingborg covered domestic waste, paper, bulky waste, garden waste and home composting for single-family homes, summer houses and blocks of flats. Transport is not key to environmental impact
One of the parameters in the scenarios was the frequency of waste collection - one, two, three or four times a month.
According to COWI's report, waste treatment is a more important environmental parameter - e.g. is the waste incinerated or recycled - than the transport of waste. Plastic bins are cheaper than wire stands
COWI's calculation demonstrated that it would be both cheaper and provide more flexibility to the household if plastic bins were set up instead of wire stands with paper bags.
It would be easier for a household to replace its plastic bin with a smaller or larger bin if the household grows or diminishes.
As the majority of single-family homes and summer houses in the four former municipalities had wire stands, the Municipality of Vordingborg chose to replace these with plastic bins.
The municipality collects bulky wasteBased on COWI's suggestions, the municipality chose source collection of bulky waste with six collections a year, instead of the citizens having to bring the waste to a civic amenity site. However, citizens are still to turn in large quantities of construction waste, garden waste and hazardous waste themselves.