Household bins could return to weekly collections under new proposals from the Environment Secretary.
Councils in England will be obliged to provide weekly pick-ups of food waste and free bins for green waste collection, according to reports in a number of Sunday papers.
Authorities will get more money from the Government to pay for the increased frequency of collections, Michael Gove said.
He was quoted as saying: "For too long food waste has been left lingering in bins for weeks.
"We'll invest to smooth out differences between individual councils, and support comprehensive and frequent rubbish and recycling collections."
Many local authorities - including South Tyneside - have reduced the collection to fortnightly, with non-recycleable household waste (grey bin) collected one week, and recycleable waste (blue bin) the next.
Garden waste is also every two weeks, between April and November.
South Tyneside Council currently charges £32 a year to have a green garden waste bin emptied.
This is for grass cuttings, leaves, weeds, flowers and plants, hedge trimmings, branches, prunings and twigs and windfall fruit.
The council is also running a trial in Whitburn and Marsden to encourage householders to recycle more card and paper in a blue bin with a red lid. It is collected every four weeks.