Headlines: November 15th, 2004

Ten local authorities are to share eight million pounds of government funding to implement a range of sustainable waste management projects designed to move more waste away from landfill.The funding, announced by environment minister Elliot Morley, brings the total awarded to local councils through the National Waste Minimisation and Recycling Fund to more than 220 million pounds since its inception in 2002. The latest funding will see the ten councils given a chance to take a lead on sustainable waste management in addition to the 336 projects already under way.

The latest authorities to benefit from the fund are Northamptonshire County Council, Hastings, Bracknell Forest and Runnymede boroughs, the district councils for North Tyneside, Kennet, Lewes, South Kesteven and Alnwick as well as Leeds City Council. The fund was open to all local authorities in England and 174 bids were made for money from the general fund for the round covering the current financial year.

Mr Morley said bringing down England’s large volume of household waste was a challenge for the government, local authorities and industry. Almost 80 per cent of the 28 million tonnes of municipal waste produced each year is still sent to landfill sites but Mr. Morley believes attitudes are changing. “There is certainly an increasing interest in sustainable waste management, clearly evident through the number of applicants we had for the funding,” he said.