Half of councils in Wales miss recycling targets

Recycling box Twelve of the 22 Welsh councils passed national recycling targets, according to preliminary figures

Related Stories

Almost half of local authorities in Wales have missed recycling targets set by the Welsh Assembly Government.

Councils were told to recycle and compost 40% of household waste in 2009/10, but 10 fell short, preliminary figures obtained by BBC Wales show.

Ministers say they believe the target would have been hit were it not for the impact of severe winter weather.

They also welcomed a reduction of almost 50% in waste going to landfill in Wales in the past five years.

More than 620,000 tonnnes of waste were recycled and composted in Wales in 2009/10, with 770,000 tonnes going to landfill.

Preliminary figures obtained by BBC Wales show that nationally, Wales just missed the target, with 39.27% of waste recycled or composted.

Verified figures are due in September.

But recycling did increase by more than three percentage points from 2008/09 and the overall amount of recycling in Wales has increased five-fold in the last decade.

Start Quote

I am urging every single person in Wales to reduce the amount of waste they produce”

End Quote Jane Davidson AM Environment minister

Environment Minister Jane Davidson has called on householders in Wales to respond to tougher targets ahead.

Ms Davidson said: "I am delighted that in 2009/2010 Wales recycled more than ever before, despite the terrible winter which made composting almost impossible for a time.

"I am confident that without these tough conditions we would have been able to recycle more than 40% of our waste.

"At the beginning of the decade we recycled just 7% of our rubbish, so we should not underestimate our achievement.

"We have, however, a long way to go, as I pointed out when I announced our new waste plans, with targets of 70 per cent recycling by 2025.

"When you consider the way we have increased our recycling rates in recent years, this target is more than achievable.

"But if we are to reach this level of recycling we need change the way we think about our waste, which is what our Towards Zero Waste strategy is all about.

"That's why I am urging every single person in Wales to reduce the amount of waste they produce, reuse products where possible and recycle everything they can, so we can create the Wales our children and grandchildren deserve."

Haf Elgar, from Friends of the Earth Cymru, said: "It is disappointing that nearly half of local authorities seem likely to miss this year's recycling target.

"This shows the urgent need for all local authorities to develop full recycling collections with kerbside sorting and for future targets to be binding."

'Good support'

Blaenau Gwent had the lowest recycling rate in Wales, at 29%, while Denbighshire recycled more than half of its waste.

A Blaenau Gwent council spokeswoman said: "We are working hard with householders to improve Blaenau Gwent's recycling figures.

Landfill site Waste in landfill sites has been reduced

"Returns for this year so far are up and there is good support for our improved weekly recycling and food waste collection service.

"But we must continue this encouraging improvement if we are to meet the statutory recycling target when it comes into effect in 2012/2013. The recycling targets for 2009/10 were guidelines only.

"We have advised everyone that there are serious financial implications if we fail to achieve the 52% recycling target set for 2012/2013 but the growing support for our recycling service is very encouraging."

Ms Elgar urged the introduction of penalties for authorities which miss recycling targets.

She said: "We need to look at the amount of waste we produce overall - the whole amount that goes to landfill and to be recycled.

"Reducing the amount of waste produced should be our number one priority."

The assembly government has announced a £142m project for five councils across North Wales - Flintshire, Anglesey, Conwy, Denbighshire and Gwynedd - to manage waste that cannot be recycled through using alternative treatments.

WALES RECYCLING, COMPOSTING AND LANDFILL: 2009/10

Source: Statswales.wales.gov.uk

COUNTY

40% RECYCLING TARGET?

WASTE RECYCLED FROM HOMES

WASTE RECYCLED FROM CENTRES

WASTE PUT INTO LANDFILL

Tonnes

Tonnes

Tonnes

Blaenau Gwent

29.2%

6833

2845

23462

Bridgend

31%

15483

6175

29642

Caerphilly

44%

42167

N/A

53595

Cardiff

39.1%

39455

9725

110605

Carmarthenshire

40.1%

16487

19333

42416

Ceredigion

47%

12595

5013

30100

Swansea

34.5%

18551

19660

82725

Conwy CBC

41.2%

11847

7518

45395

Denbighshire

51%

15404

5895

21041

Flintshire

40.6%

18825

19767

47785

Gwynedd

41.2%

8778

5909

45734

Anglesey

49.3%

12573

5935

20376

Merthyr

34.4%

3814

2792

21147

Monmouthshire

41.3%

N/A

N/A

N/A

Neath Port Talbot

34.4%

27793

9985

30144

Newport

38.8%

21350

7350

41600

Pembrokeshire

40.7%

18660

12227

38499

Powys

38.8%

6971.34

11021.61

48043.43

Rhondda Cynon Taf

34.6%

33511

7031

76450

Torfaen

43.3%

12067

6917

26950

Vale of Glamorgan

37.8%

14900.66

37204.53

Wrexham

41.8%

16727

13894

46643

WALES TOTAL

39.2%

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Wales stories

RSS

Features

  • Alana Saarinen at pianoMum, Dad and Mum

    The girl with three biological parents


  • Polish and British flags alongside British roadsideWar debt

    Does the UK still feel a sense of obligation towards Poles?


  • Islamic State fighters parade in Raqqa, Syria (30 June 2014)Who backs IS?

    Where Islamic State finds support to become a formidable force


  • Bride and groom-to-be photographed underwaterWetted bliss

    Chinese couples told to smile, but please hold your breath


  • A ship is dismantled for scrap in the port city of Chittagong, BangladeshDangerous work

    Bangladesh's ship breakers face economic challenge


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.