New figures show that Northern Ireland recycled 39.3% of its household waste between July 2009 to September 2009. This represents a 0.5% increase compared with the same quarter in 2008 to 2009 (38.8%).
In contrast, Wales recycled 41.1% during the same period.
The figures have been published by the Department of the Environment in a new report called Northern Ireland Municipal Waste Management Statistics Report July to September 2009 (21 January). The report indicates that composting accounted for 19%, with recycling making up the other 20% of household waste recycled. The remaining 61% of household waste was sent to landfill.
Commenting on the results, Environment Minister Edwin Poots said: Recycling is increasingly part of everyday life in households across Northern Ireland. People are rethinking how they treat waste and are clearly considering the impact their waste has on the environment.
The latest statistics demonstrate the commitment of both local councils and my department in helping reduce both recyclable and biodegradable municipal waste being sent to landfill sites. We need to keep this momentum going as there is clearly room for more improvement.