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Wales Continues to Impress with Recycling Performance

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Wales’ impressive recycling performance shows no sign of diminishing as latest figures reveal we now recycle, reuse or compost 64 per cent of our waste, up from the previous year’s rate of 60 per cent.

Provisional data for the 12 months ending March 2017, shows:

  • The reuse/recycling/composting rate increased to 64 per cent, compared with 60 per cent for the 12 months to the end of March 2016.
  • The total amount of municipal waste generated in Wales in January – March 2017 decreased with the tonnage falling by 6 per cent, from 400 to 375 thousand tonnes, compared to the same quarter of 2016.
  • The residual household waste generated per person decreased by 4 per cent, falling to 48 kilograms per person in January to March 2017, compared with the same quarter of 2016

The Welsh Government has set statutory targets of recycling 58 per cent by 2016-17, 64 per cent by 2019-20 and 70 per cent of waste by 2024-25.  The latest data shows all but one local authority met the current 2016-17 target. Although Blaenau Gwent just missed the 58% target, its 57% rate was an increase on the 49% seen a year earlier.

The Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths welcomed the publication of the data. She said:

“These latest recycling figures make for extremely satisfying reading. They reveal the waste we are generating is decreasing while the amount we recycle continues to rise.

“We should be extremely proud of our recycling performance here in Wales. This is an area where we lead the way in the UK and indeed just two countries in the whole world recycle now more than we do.

“We are always looking at how we can continue to improve. Only last week I announced I intend to consult on plans to halve food waste by 2025. I am confident this is achievable thanks to the continued efforts of Local Authorities and householders’ commitment to recycling. Today’s figures prove they clearly share our ambition for Wales to become a zero waste nation by 2050”.