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Landfill gate fees rise as volume shrinks

Landfill gate fees increased in 2016 by just under 5% while fees for most other facilities fell, according to WRAP’s annual Gate Fees Report, which also showed a wide divergence in transactions at MRFs.

The survey, now in its 10th year, covers gate fees charged to local authorities in the UK for a range of municipal waste recycling, recovery, treatment and disposal options.

While fees for MRFs, anaerobic digestion (AD) and energy-from-waste (EfW) fell, in-vessel composting (IVC) and wood waste gate fees remained stable.

The median non-hazardous landfill gate fee (including landfill tax) reported by councils is £107 per tonne compared with £102 per tonne in 2015. WRAP says feedback from local authority officers and waste contractors suggest that a lack of landfill capacity in some regions due to closures could be the reason for this upward trend.

The median gate fee paid by local authorities for MRF services fell from £25 per tonne in the previous report to £15 per tonne. The range of MRF fees was wider than other technologies, with some councils saying they received £77 per tonne in income for their materials while others reported paying up to £99 per tonne to their MRF.

Twenty local authorities (21% of those responding) said they either paid no gate fee or received payment from the MRF for their materials compared with 28% in 2015 and 46% the year before.

Gate fees for IVC have remained on a par with previous years at £43 per tonne, while the median AD fee is is notably lower than last year at £29 per tonne compared with £40 per tonne in 2015. Waste operators indicated this could reflect over-capacity in the market, although it varied from region to region.

EfW gate fees decreased from £86 per tonne last year to £83 per tonne, while those for wood waste remained stable at £35 per tonne across the country.

The Gate Fees Report is at www.wrap.org.uk/gatefees2017 with an interactive infographic at http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/gate-fees-report-2017-infographic

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