Recycling rates across the UK have continued on a gradual rise, with the total recycling, reuse and composting figures in England reaching 44.8% in the 12 months to December 2014. This marks a small 0.6% increase from the 44.2% achieved during 2013.
Recycling Rates Continue Slow Growth
The data came from Defra, which released the figures for the final quarter in 2014, allowing a picture of the entire last year to be made. It says the increase was driven by a rise in the volume of organic waste recycled, which was up 9.9% compared to the previous 12 months in 2013.
However other data released by Defra which looks into local authority collection, treatment and disposal waste showed the recycling rate fell to 42% between October and December 2014, this is in comparison to 42.7% for the same quarter in 2013.
The news means that the UK has failed to make any significant ground towards the European Union target of recycling 50% of household waste by 2020. If this target is missed in five years time, then the country could face a fine from the European Commission – if we are still in the EU by this time.
Calls have been made by a range of activists and others in the waste industry since the May election for the new Conservative government to take serious action about the country’s flat lining recycling rates and other issues surrounding total waste management. This led to Rory Stewart being appointed the new waste and recycling minister at Defra, which followed him to set out an ambition for the UK to become the “best country in the world for recycling”.
While progress towards the main 2020 target has stalled, there have been some positives including a 14.8% decrease in the amount of waste sent to landfill in 2014 compared to 2013. Another positive figure was the increase in waste to incineration which rose by 31.7% during the course of the year.
Overall the data shows that total waste created by households had a rise of 3.7% in the 12 months ending December 2014 to 22.4 million tonnes. It also found that 2014 saw the tonnage of materials recycled, composted and prepared for reuse rise by 5.2% to 10 million tonnes compared to the previous year, while residual waste rose by 2.5% to 12.3 million tonnes during the year.
Total Waste management From Recycling Services
At Recycling Services we provide total waste management solutions for both large and small companies. Our service includes all aspects of waste collection and delivery so you will always be on the right side of the regulations.
If you would like to find out more about total waste management or any of our other services, then please get in touch with the Recycling Services team who will happy to answer any questions you may have. Please call us today on 01952 204471.