The 2019/20 Northern Ireland local authority collected municipal waste management annual statistics report that the landfill rate for waste collected by councils has reached a new annual low.
The landfill rate for waste collected by Northern Ireland’s councils recorded a new annual low of 24.0% in 2019/20, a fall from 74.0% in 2006/07 and 28.9% in 2018/19, according to the newly released figures.
The country’s local authorities collected 998,985 tonnes of waste during 2019/20 which was 0.9% higher than that collected in 2018/19.
During 2019/20, 51.1% of waste collected by councils was sent for recycling, 1.3% higher than the recycling rate for 2018/19.
More than one fifth of waste arisings were sent for energy recovery in 2019/20, compared to 19.4 % in 2018/19, and 0.4 % 10 years ago.
Household waste accounted for 88.2 % of all waste collected during 2019/20. The recycling rate for household waste was 51.9 % while the landfill rate for household waste was 23.7 %. Fermanagh & Omagh generated the smallest amount of household waste per capita at 412 kg whilst Antrim & Newtownabbey recorded the largest at 588 kg per capita.
The household waste recycling rate of 51.9 % has met the Northern Ireland Waste Management Strategy target to recycle 50 % of household waste by 2020. This target was first met in 2018/19 with the latest figure the highest household recycling rate ever recorded for Northern Ireland.
The household waste recycling rate is also a population indicator for the draft Programme for Government Framework 2016-2021. The household waste recycling rate of 51.9 % is an increase of 9.8 percentage points since the baseline year for PfG reporting (2014/15) and is considered as a positive change for PfG reporting.
There were 126,286 tonnes of biodegradable waste sent to landfill during 2019/20. This was 17.6 % lower than the 153,323 tonnes sent in 2018/19 and also represents a lower proportion of the reduced annual allowance allocated to councils under the Northern Ireland Landfill Allowance Scheme (NILAS) in 2019/20.