England’s household waste recycling rate reached a new high of 47% between July and September 2012, according to provisional figures.
Some 6.2m tonnes of household waste was collected in that quarter, with 2.9m tonnes of it recycled, composted or reused, equivalent to 54kg per person. There was also an increase in incineration, while use of landfill fell, new Defra figures show.
This gives an annual rate of 44% of waste recycled, composted or reused.
Defra said seasonal factors affecting garden waste collections normally inflated collection figures during the spring and summer months, but in the last five years household waste for recycling, composting or reuse has increased by 17 percentege points, while residual waste has fallen by 25 percentage points.
Of the local authority waste collected, 2.3m tonnes went to landfill, down 9% on the July to September 2011 quarter.
Comparing the same periods, 1.4m tonnes went for incineration, a 14% increase on the previous year.
A Defra spokesperson said: “Nearly half of all household waste is now recycled. This is good news for both the environment and the economy.”