The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management has welcomed the landfill tax increase from £32 per tonne to £40 per tonne (1 April).
The landfill tax escalator increases the price of sending waste to landfill to encourage more sustainable ways of managing waste, the Treasury explained. The Government hopes that this will help the UK reach its 2010 targets under the Landfill Directive.
CIWM deputy chief executive Chris Murphy told MRW: This was not unexpected we were told about this last year that landfill tax will be going up £8 per tonne over a three year period and will be rising to £48 per tonne next year. It has led to authorities looking for new technologies in their efforts to divert waste from landfill.
But the Treasury needs to provide us with a decisive statement as to what they have planned after 2010 and how much landfill tax will be after that. The sooner we know that the better.
Murphy added that £40 per tonne for landfill tax will have a substantial impact but going beyond that figure will have more of an impact in getting business and councils to divert waste from landfill.
A Treasury spokesman said that the matter will be kept under review as part of the Budget process.
Defra spokesperson said: Landfill tax has played an important part in reducing waste sent to landfill and encouraging local authorities to move towards more sustainable methods of waste management. We all Government, local authorities and individuals have a responsibility to reduce the amount of rubbish were sending to landfill. Were now recycling 34% of our waste and local authorities and individuals should be congratulated for this, but there is still more we need to do.
Last month, the Local Government Association said that the new landfill tax will add £30 to the council tax bills of every family in England. It said that at current rates of landfill, the tax will cost councils £620 million a year (see MRW story).
LGA chairman Paul Bettison said that the Government should fulfil its promise to return the money raised through landfill tax to local authorities. He explained that this will allow councils to reinvest in improving recycling facilities and diverting more rubbish away from landfill.