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Waste sector's contribution to low-carbon economy highlighted

The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) has released a report on Britain’s low-carbon economy covering 2010-13 which includes the waste sector.

The aim of the report was “to gain a clear understanding of the size and performance of the low-carbon economy and its contribution to the UK economy”.

It published numerous findings on the waste industry, including:

  • the sector is the largest in the low-carbon economy with 37% of companies, 32% of employment, 45% of turnover and 49% of gross value added
  • it is populated by 4,230 businesses which collectively employ 146,900 people
  • three-quarters of these firms are in recycling and recovery
  • the aggregate turnover of the sector is £54.6bn
  • there are more businesses involved in biomass equipment (9%) than energy from waste and biomass (4%)
  • the compound annual growth rate in the waste sector was 3.3%
  • in 2013 it is estimated that £447.4m of electricity (9,005GWh) was generated from waste (£155.5m from residual waste treatment, £35.1m from anaerobic digestion and £256.8m from landfill gas capture)

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