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Call for ban on biodegradable waste sent to landfill by 2025

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has called for a ban on all biodegradable waste sent to landfill by 2025, if the UK is to reach ‘net zero emissions’ by 2050.

The CCC released its long-awaited report this month (May 2019) outlining what several sectors need to do in order to reach the 2050 target. For the waste industry, it noted that along with measures to reduce food waste, policy needs to be introduced to ban biodegradable waste going to landfill by 2025:

“Bio-degradable waste streams should not be sent to landfill after 2025. This will require regulation and enforcement, with supporting actions through the waste chain, including for example mandatory separation of remaining waste,”

The report explained that reducing food waste is a “key step” that individuals can take to reduce emissions, but the focus here was largely on consumer behaviour. This included reducing the quantity of food purchased as currently a significant share of agricultural land is devoted to the production of food that ends up being thrown away, “often still in an edible state”. At an embargoed launch event of the report earlier this week, Chris Stark, the committee’s chief executive, explained that nothing stated in the report is unreasonable.

The full report can be read here.

The report ties in with the proposed mandatory collection of food waste itemised within the Waste and Resource Strategy which is proposed to be brought in by 2023 enabling the landfill ban on biodegradable waste to be achievable.

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