Croydon leads the way with garbage weighing
Croydon Council is fitting microchips to wheely bins for a scheme which will affect 100,000 households from April, 2005.
Refuse removal vehicles will also be fitted with gadgets to read the microchips, and the council will keep records of when bins are emptied and the weight of their contents.
The theory behind the system is that if a bin weighs significantly more than the average, then it must contain items which should have gone into a recycling scheme with the implication that the Refuse Police will turn up the morning after the refuse collection round to impose a stiff fine.
Other London councils will be 'observing the scheme' (watching to see if it all goes horribly wrong) and Bexley Council plans to microchip its wheely bins but not do anything further for the moment.
Croydon Council says its new system will ensure that bins are not missed out of collections and the council will be able to help people to 'manage their refuse'. Critics warn that burglars will hack into the council's records, find out which addresses are producing less waste than usual, assume the household is on holiday and do the place over.