Now the dust has settled on the Chancellor’s Budget and the changes made to landfill tax for 2014/2015, David Adams, Managing Director at 707 Resource Management, takes a look at what the link to the Retail Price Index (RPI) actually means in practice.
With future landfill tax rises related to the RPI, this would, in effect, see the higher rate set at £82.60 and the lower rate at £2.60 from April 2015, reducing the financial incentive for businesses to choose recycling over landfill disposal.
For the waste management industry, it is now more important than ever to focus on alternative ways to incentivise recycling. How can we, as an industry, ensure that companies continue to choose to recycle rather than sending waste straight to landfill?
It is key we, in the waste management sector, come together over the next year and rise to the challenge of selling the ease and benefits of recycling to business. It is an easy option, if done right, and is comparable on costs with an ethical and environmental benefit. Future success relies on getting the message across that by separating waste into its individual components, either at source or through a Materials Recycle Facility (MRF), we can turn waste into a resource.
At 707, we strongly believe that banning certain items from landfill would also be beneficial not only for jobs in industry, but for the UK as a whole. Scotland has already introduced The Waste (Scotland) Regulations 2012 which, in short, means businesses have to present recyclables such as metal, plastic, glass, card and food for separate collection.
According to Green Alliance’s recently published report, “More jobs, less carbon: why we need landfill bans”, the UK puts at least £3.8bn of resources in landfill each year. Landfill bans could help stimulate better collection systems, which could underpin investment in infrastructure and create up to 47,500 jobs in industries such as anaerobic digestion, textile recycling, plastics and electronics manufacturing.
I passionately believe we need a change in focus as an industry to drive efficiency and other supportive solutions. We hope that George Osborne revises waste management regulations positively in the future, but for now, it’s important that the industry work together to provide the best offer for business. Only this approach will ensure together, we reduce landfill and make a more sustainable future for us all.