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Waste Disposal

Volume 455: debated on Wednesday 10 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the average performance against best value performance indicator 82 (a) a and (b) b for household waste recycling and composting performance was of (i) waste collection authorities, (ii) waste disposal authorities and (iii) unitary waste authorities in (A) London and (B) England in 2004-05. (113492)

[holding answer 8 January 2007]: Average local authority household recycling and composting rates for London and England for each type of authority based on their 2004-05 best value performance indicators are shown in the following table. The average rates are weighted according to population within each local authority area and overall estimates for London and England are based on performance by unitary authorities and waste disposal authorities.

Percentage

2004-5

Dry recycling rate (82a)

Green recycling rate (82b)

82a+b

England

14.9

7.9

22.9

WDA

16.0

9.2

25.2

UA

13.0

5.5

18.5

WCA

14.9

5.9

20.8

London

13.8

3.9

17.7

WDA

13.4

4.1

17.5

UA

14.4

3.5

17.9

WCA

13.2

4.3

17.5

Source: Best Value Performance Indicators 20045

Statistics for 2005-06 are also available and can be viewed at:

http://www.defra.gov.uk/news/2006/061215a.htm

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of whether each London waste disposal authority is on track to achieve its landfill allowance trading scheme allocations for 2010. (113494)

[holding answer 8 January 2007]: On 12 October 2006 I publicly congratulated all waste authorities in England for complying with their obligations during 2005-06. England's total allocation of allowances for that period was set at 15.2 million tonnes, and the calculated amount of biodegradable municipal waste (BMW) sent to landfill was 12.4 million tonnes. That surplus is available to local authorities in 2006-07.

In 2009-10, the amount of BMW which can go to landfill will fall to 11.2 million tonnes. Waste disposal authorities will have to reduce the amount of BMW going to landfill by about 1.2 million tonnes compared to 2005-06. England is making good progress to meet this target, assuming that current trends continue.

The flexibilities provided by the landfill allowances trading scheme (LATS) will enable waste disposal authorities to meet their obligations under the scheme in the most cost effective way. It is up to each authority to plan how to comply with its duties in any scheme year. It is not possible to predict how any individual authority will choose to comply with the requirements of the scheme in 2009-10.

Information about the performance of all waste disposal authorities in England is available on the LATS public register at:

http://lats.defra.gov.uk/Default.aspx?Menu=register&Module=publicRegister/registerMain.

The Environment Agency has published a report on the first year of the landfill allowances trading scheme:

http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/business/444217/444663/landfill/986852/987368/1113678/1512729/

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to prevent local authorities from meeting their landfill allowance trading scheme allocations by moving waste off the municipal balance sheet by selling off their commercial waste portfolios. (113495)

[holding answer 8 January 2007]: Selling off its commercial waste portfolio will not help a local authority to work within its landfill allowance.

Section 45 (1) (b) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 places a duty on the local authority to make arrangements for the collection of commercial waste in its area, if requested by the holder of the waste to collect it. Therefore in order to fulfil this duty, the authority must have arrangements in place to deal with waste from commercial sources. Irrespective of whether it provides the service itself or contracts some other body to do the work, the local authority is still in control of the waste.

Under the landfill allowance trading scheme (LATS) regulations, all waste controlled by the local authority is considered municipal waste and counts towards its allowance.

DEFRA's guidance on LATS can be accessed via the following link:

http://www.defra.gov.uk/environment/waste/localauth/lats/pdf/lats-municipalwasteguidance.pdf