EVERY household in Burnley is to be encouraged to recycle cans, aluminium foil and aerosols as part of a new environmental drive.

Blue re-usable bags will be issued throughout the borough and will be collected once a fortnight, along with the blue bins for glass and white sacks for waste paper.

Leaflets explaining which items should be put in each container will also be distributed.

Burnley Council is taking part in a national scheme which swaps aluminium cans for trees and already stands to receive eight new saplings to be planted in the Forest of Burnley from the previous system of collecting cans in carrier bags.

Since the introduction of the blue box system six months ago the council has collected 250 tonnes of glass bottles and 55 tonnes of cans.

Sarah Catterall, the council's re-thinking waste officer, said: "This is another way of trying to make things easier for people to recycle their rubbish so we can reduce the amount of waste dumped into landfill sites.

"If you consider the number of tins that households go through every week you can see why it's important to recycle them rather than throw them into a wheelie bin.

"We hope these re-usable bags will encourage more people to bag cans rather than bin them. They can also use the bags to collect aluminium foil and aerosols.

"It helps if people rinse out the cans before putting them in the blue bag and crushing cans will create more room in the bag, but obviously people should be careful.

"When people put the bag out for collection they can either put it in their blue bin or leave the bag alongside it."