UK Government Misses Own Waste Reduction Target

gov-misses-waste-reduction-targetThe UK Government has missed its own target to reduce the amount of waste it generates, according to a report quietly published in November.

The Government achieved a 22% reduction, missing the 25% target by 3%. However, 16 out of 22 departments “met or exceeded” the target, up from 13 in 2013-14 and 8 in 2012-13.

Government as a whole diverted 83% of its waste from landfill in 2014-15, which is up from 75% in 2013-14.

The Government also missed its 2015 “Greening Government Commitments” (GGC) targets for green house gas emissions, reduction in domestic flights, water consumption and paper usage.

“The proportion of departments’ waste sent to landfill is being reported in order to increase transparency and demonstrate the efforts being made by departments to prioritise reuse, recycling and energy recovery over disposal”

Waste levels remained static in 2014-15 at 2013-14 levels. This does represent, however, a significant reduction on 2009-10 baseline levels, which the Government says is a noteworthy achievement when it is considered that the majority of departments have been undertaking “significant reorganisation and rationalisation programmes”, potentially generating large volumes of waste from reducing the size of their operations.

The waste target commits the Government to ensuring that redundant Information and Communication Technology (ICT) equipment is reused within Government, the public sector, wider society, or responsibly recycled.

For the purposes of the GGC target, waste reused outside a department is still classified as waste. This means that although items such as surplus furniture may have been reused by other organisations, this is still recorded under waste totals for the purposes of this report.

“The proportion of departments’ waste sent to landfill is being reported in order to increase transparency and demonstrate the efforts being made by departments to prioritise reuse, recycling and energy recovery over disposal,” the report states.

Savings worth an estimated £12.5m were achieved through reduced waste, the Government says.

For the full report CLICK HERE

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