The results confirm the provisional analyses released to local authorities in May 1997 as part of an extensive consultation and validation of the information.
Welcoming the publication Angela Eagle said:
'This is an important step in tackling the inadequacies of data on all aspects of waste generation and waste management, identified in the White Paper Making Waste Work.
'The results of this survey carry important messages for us all as consumers. Households on average produce over a tonne of waste each year. Yet in 1995/96 households recycled or composted only 6.5% of the waste they produced. The challenge now before us is to achieve the target of recycling 25% of household waste by 2000.'
Key findings from the survey are:
In 1995/96 almost 26 million tonnes of municipal wastes were generated in England and Wales and a little over 90% of this waste was derived from household sources
Responding waste disposal authorities reported that on average 83% of the waste they handled was disposed of to landfill.
Responding authorities in the North, South West, West Midlands and South East reported proportions below the national average of 83%
In total around 1.5 million tonnes, or 6.5 percent of household waste was separately collected for recycling or composting in England and Wales in 1995/96
Glass and paper and card accounted for 60% of the household waste collected for recycling by weight
118 waste collection authorities reported operating a separate kerbside collection scheme in their area. Nationally 16% of households are covered by such schemes
149 waste collection authorities had distributed home composting bins in recent years and one-third of these authorities distributed the bins free of charge
Approximately half of the 187,000 bins distributed free in recent years had been distributed in the 12 months to the end of March 1996. Only one per cent of households had accepted a bin by the end of 1995/96.
This is the first edition of a new annual publication under the banner of the Government Statistical Service. The publication presents the results of a detailed analysis of information on the arisings and disposal of municipal waste, on the levels of recycling and recovery of household and municipal waste, on methods of waste containment, levels of service provision and types and duration of disposal contracts that was provided by local authorities in England and Wales. The information contained in the bulletin will be of value to all involved in waste management planning and in promoting and developing the recycling of household waste. Information from the survey will be shared with the Environment Agency which is working on a complementary survey to establish the quantity of waste produced by industry and the services sector.
The department recognises that there is a very wide interest in information on this subject area and that local authorities receive many requests from organisations for data on the quantities of waste handled. The department is seeking to work more closely with some of these groups in an effort to reduce the number of surveys authorities are asked to participate in.
Municipal Waste Management 1995/96 can be obtained from Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, Publications Sales Centre, Unit 8, Goldthorpe Industrial Estate, Goldthorpe, Rotherham SG3 9BL Tel: 01709 891318, Fax: 01709 881673 ISBN 1 85112 0645, price£10