Because of strong links between the survey forms and operational practice and because of the greater extent to which waste is weighed the estimates are considered to be more accurate than any available previously. However, there is a continuing measure of uncertainty in estimates of waste from non-household sources such as street cleansing, because only a small proportion of these wastes are weighed. Furthermore in areas where trade and commercial wastes are collected with household wastes on rounds covering premises with mixed uses, it remains difficult to estimate accurately the proportion which is attributable to households and that which is attributable to businesses.
POINTS OF INTEREST
WASTE ARISINGS AND OUTLETS FOR HOUSEHOLD WASTE
Almost 26 million tonnes of municipal waste was generated in England and Wales during 1995/96, but only about 8 percent came from non-household sources
Households produce on average 21kg of waste each week. Wales has the highest average weekly arisings at 23kg per household per week
The single largest source of household waste arisings is the regular refuse collection service, which accounts for 70% of all household waste.
Higher rates of waste generation by households in wheeled bin areas are found throughout England and Wales, whether one considers all household waste or only waste from the regular refuse collection service
Wheeled bins are more widely used by authorities that rely on services provided by direct service organisations, than those authorities that contract the refuse collection service to private contractors. On average 41% of households in districts served by DSOs will be supplied with a wheeled bin, whereas only 32% of households in districts served by private contractors will use wheeled bins.
Households in Metropolitan districts are most likely to be provided with some form of waste containment by their authority.
In London over one-third of households will not be provided with any form of waste containment.
Almost 50% of households in Metropolitan districts, about one-quarter of households in London and over a third of households in Non-metropolitan districts and Wales will be provided with wheeled bins.
TREATMENT AND DISPOSAL OF MUNICIPAL WASTE
Landfill and recovery
The most commonly used method of disposal of municipal waste was landfill, which accounted for 83% of the 22.4 million tonnes notified by authorities.
Approximately 2.8 million tonnes (12%) of municipal waste had value recovered from it through materials recycling, central composting or energy from waste.
The proportion of waste recovered varies from around 3 percent in the East Midlands and the North West to around 18 percent in the South East and South West.
Incineration with energy recovery makes a significant contribution to the recovered fractions in the West Midlands, the South East and Yorkshire. In the South West and Wales the recovered fraction is achieved solely through recycling and composting.
Duration of landfill contracts and minimum tonnages
The proportion of the available MSW that is accounted for by minimum quantities specified in landfill contracts of more than 10 years duration varies from around 30% in non-metropolitan districts to almost 60% in London.
RECYCLING AND COMPOSTING OF HOUSEHOLD WASTE
Quantity and types of materials recycled
The Department estimates that approximately 1.5 million tonnes (6.5%) of household waste was separately collected for recycling or composting in 1995/96.
Of the household waste collected for recycling 37% consisted of paper and card, 24% consisted of glass, and 1% was accounted for by steel and aluminium cans.
176 waste collection authorities reported that a further 31,000 tonnes of household waste had been collected for recycling through schemes run by the voluntary or private sector.
Recycling infrastructure and yields from different schemes
Bring systems are the source of 50% of material collected for recycling or composting and are the main source for all materials except putrescibles and card. Most card and putrescible material is collected at civic amenity sites.
About 16% of households nationally are covered by separate kerbside schemes. The proportion of households covered in districts with schemes varies from 15% to almost two-thirds.
Only 2% of households nationally are covered by integrated kerbside schemes and these are predominantly in the South East.
Centralised and Home Composting
130,000 tonnes of putrescible material was reported as being collected for centralised composting and over 92,000 tonnes of material was estimated as being composted at home. The estimate for material composted at home is subject to considerable uncertainty.
The survey revealed that 26 Waste Disposal Authorities operated a centralised composting scheme.
The survey revealed that 149 authorities have distributed home composting bins to households. Over 40% of London boroughs and Metropolitan districts distributed them free of charge, but only 26% of non-metropolitan districts and one third of Welsh authorities did so.
Over 93,000 composting bins were distributed in 1995/96, around two-thirds of these were distributed by non-metropolitan authorities.
Centralised composting and home composting accounted for 10% and 7% respectively of total materials recycling.
Home and centralised composting account for less than 10% of total recycling in London, but between 15-20% in the rest of England and Wales.
Centralised composting accounts for about one-fifth of the material recycled in East Anglia nd the South West. These are two of only four regions where centralised composting is reported as making a larger contribution to recycling than home composting.
Home composting is reported as accounting for 30% of the weight of material recycled in the West Midlands.
Recycling rates and recycling credits
Recycling rates in London boroughs and Metropolitan districts are about half those in non-metropolitan districts and Wales.
Approximately 80% of recycling collection credits and recycling disposal credits paid by value were paid by non-metropolitan districts and counties.
Around three-quarters of the recycling disposal credits received, by local authorities went to non-metropolitan districts.
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.