Fifteen new solar-powered litter bins have been bought by Hartlepool Council.
The sun's rays charge a 12-volt battery which, in turn, powers a compacting system that allows the Bigbelly bins to take up to eight times more waste than standard bins.
The bins, which are being trialled at various locations around Seaton Carew, also have a hi-tech system that alerts Council staff by text and email when they need emptying.
The bins, which are costing £90,000, are opened using a handle or a foot pedal and they are self-closing once litter has been deposited. This design also means that scavenging seagulls are unable to get to the waste inside the bins.
If the bins at Seaton Carew prove successful, it is hoped to install others in more parts of the town.
Their purchase follows the Council’s approval earlier this year of a three-year Clean and Green Strategy which sets out a vision for clean and well-maintained streets, parks, other green spaces and highways across the town.