London, UK – The Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has published new estimates on UK statistics on waste. According to the figures, the UK recycling rate of ‘waste from households’ reached 44.9 per cent in 2014, rising from 44.1 per cent in 2013 and compares to 40.4 per cent in 2010. There is an EU target for the UK to recycle at least 50 per cent of household waste by 2020.
UK Biodegradable Municipal Waste (BMW) sent to landfill has continued to reduce and in 2013 was 9.2 million tonnes. This represents 26 per cent of the 1995 baseline value, which comfortably met the 2013 EU target (no greater than 50 per cent of the 1995 baseline). The UK also comfortably met the 2010 target. There is a further EU target to restrict BMW landfilled to 35 per cent of the 1995 baseline by 2020.
In 2013, 72.7 per cent of UK packaging waste was either recycled or recovered compared to 69.1 per cent in 2012. The 2013 EU target was for the UK to recycle or recover at least 60 per cent of packaging waste.
The UK generated 200.0 million tonnes of total waste in 2012. Almost half (50.0 per cent) of the 186.2 million tonnes of total waste that entered final treatment in the UK in 2012 was recovered. The proportion that went to landfill was 26.1 per cent.
Half of total waste (50 per cent) was generated by non-hazardous construction and demolition waste. In 2012, the UK generated 44.8 million tonnes of non-hazardous C&D waste, of which 38.8 million tonnes was recovered. This represents a recovery rate of 86.5 per cent, which is above the target of 70 per cent which the UK must meet in 2020.
Commercial & industrial activities generated almost a quarter (24 per cent) of total waste, with households responsible for a further 14 per cent. The Waste Statistics Return 2012 estimated waste generation from commercial and industrial economic activities to be 47.6 million tonnes in 2012, of which 39.0 million tonnes was from England. The estimated waste generation from commercial and industrial economic activities from the Reconcile Project was 43.8 million tonnes for England in 2012. The scope of the project was England only, so there is no equivalent at UK level.
The full release can be downloaded from gov.uk.
Source: Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs