A Government consultation paper with proposals on the 'environmental trusts' was published today.
The government said their purpose is to clean up old landfill sites and promote sustainable waste management practice.
The trusts would be independent of Government, and might fund the restoration of closed landfill sites, and aid research and development of more sustainable waste management practices.
'The publication today of the consultation paper on the details of the proposed landfill tax marks a significant opportunity to promote sustainable waste management practices for the future, and to remedy the consequences of unsustainable practices in the past.
'The trusts would spend their money on broad purposes approved by Government. These might include restoration of closed landfill sites where liability is unclear or falls on a person without the means to carry out such work; or on research into, or development of, more sustainable waste management practices.
'The establishment of such trusts will provide a significant opportunity for the private sector to build on their involvement in improving the environment.
The new landfill tax, to be introduced in 1996, was announced by the chancellor in his Budget speech in November 1994 Under the proposals in the consultation paper, landfill tax rebates would be available to those landfill operators making payments to trusts for specified environmental purposes.