Waste management and recycling consultancies earned around £91m in 2012, according to figures released by business research firm Environment Analyst.
Its survey of the ‘top 33’ environmental consultancies revealed the sector as a whole grew by 6.1% in 2012, compared with 4.5% in 2011.
Waste management and recycling consultancy business grew 5.3% in 2011, increasing to 6.1% in 2012.
But Environment Analyst said growth across the sector was “far from uniform” and warned the impact of Government spending cuts was “continuing to be felt”.
It said the value of Government-sourced contracts to the sector was down 19% since 2009, to £412m.
It mentioned Ricardo-AEA as being “heavily dependent” on Government-sourced contracts.
Report author Liz Trew said: “It has been a tough few years for the industry adjusting to the depressed market, but it seems that most firms have now dealt with overcapacity issues and firms are now looking to add to their workforce for the first time post recession.
“However, consultancies that are strongly reliant on public sector sourced work continue to come under significant pressure and will need to diversify in order to survive.”
The report found revenue generated from the private sector rose by a 9%, accounting for 75% of the total market.
Adam Read, practice director for Ricardo-AEA, said: “The market figures do ring true, and we are seeing an upturn in spending on infrastructure to meet European Commission and national targets.
“However, consultancy work on policy and strategy remains tight, as does communications linked with recycling service design and implementation.
“So public funds are tight and with reductions in WRAP budgets from Defra the market next year will be tough for those who only service public sector clients.
“This is why we are increasing our work with the private sector and internationally.”