The weather, rather than the efforts of waste bosses, is responsible for a fall in the amount of rubbish produced in Oxfordshire, it has been claimed.
Levels of rubbish had been on the rise in Oxfordshire
Levels had grown by 20% since 1997 but in 2003 dropped by 2%, from 300,800 tonnes in 2002 to 295,600.
County council chiefs have been studying the amount of waste produced in relation to temperature and rainfall.
They say the amount of dry weather the county experienced in 2003 led to the reduction in the amount of rubbish produced.
Adam Symons, the council's head of waste management, said: "We have put a huge amount of effort and resources into slowing the growth in rubbish and so we are delighted with the results this year.
"However, we know that this year has also been very dry.
"So we expect that people have been cutting the lawn less and throwing out less garden rubbish - plants have just stopped growing as much this year."
Residents in Oxfordshire produce less rubbish than the national average and the council hopes that success is in part due to their efforts.
Councillor Anne Purse, executive member for waste management, said: "We know that much of the good news is tempered by the impact of the weather but we are confident that we can work with residents to achieve more."