The Local Government Association (LGA) has said councils need more money to hit the UK’s household recycling target for 2020.
The LGA’s call came in its submission to the Treasury ahead of the Chancellor’s November spending review.
Household waste recycling reached a record high of 44.8% for the calendar year 2014, up from 44.2% in 2013.
The yearly figure is still short of the EU target for the UK to recycle at least 50% of household waste by 2020.
The submission said councils would have to increase their spending on waste collection and recycling services from the current level of £3.8bn a year.
Chairman Gary Porter said: “Leaving councils to pick up the bill for new national policies while being handed further spending reductions cannot be an option.
“Enormous pressure will be heaped on already stretched local services if the Government fails to fully assess the impact of these unfunded cost burdens when making its spending decisions for the next five years.
“Vital services, such as caring for the elderly, protecting children, collecting bins, filling potholes and maintaining our parks and green spaces, will simply struggle to continue at current levels.”
The LGA has calculated that implementing Government policies across all sectors over the next five years will cost councils an extra £6.3bn by 2020, on top of the £3.6bn extra required to maintain services at their current level.
Local authorities’ overall spending on collection and recycling increased from £3.43bn in 2010-11 to £3.53bn in 2013-14, a total of 3%, according to the LGA.