Headlines: September 27th, 2010

Recycling and composting rates in Wales have reached 44 per cent of municipal waste, according to new figures. They show a three per cent increase released and also reveal that the overall amount of waste being collected by councils has fallen.

The report shows waste fell from 413 thousand tonnes collected between April and June this year compared to 427 thousand tonnes during the same period in 2009. The figures also show the amount of residual household waste produced per person has fallen from 77 kilograms to 71 kilos over the year.

In spite of the improvements the Welsh Assembly’s Environment Minister, Jane Davidson, has cautioned against over-optimism and said recycling rates told only part of the story. “I believe that we need to go a step further. We need to develop the best recycling services possible if we are to reach our target of recycling 70 per cent of our waste by 2025,” she said.

Ms Davidson also pointed to the value of recycling to councils in Wales. “Recycled materials are a valuable resource that can be sold to generate much-needed funds for local authorities and provide the raw materials for Welsh industry,” she said. She praised householders for making a real effort over the past decade to change their habits but said those efforts could not be allowed to go to waste. It was time, she said, to, use the evidence that was now available to develop a new generation of recycling services which would give councils value for money as well as helping Wales reach its recycling goals.