MPs call on Treasury to address waste in Autumn Statement
Last week saw a number of MPs call on the Treasury to address the future of waste and recycling in the upcoming Autumn Statement, which is to be published on November 23.
The call follows a lengthy inquiry into the Treasury and how its budget and policies have contributed to the environment and sustainability.
A report produced and published by the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC), whose members consist of cross-party MPs, believes the Treasury is not doing enough for the environment.
The EAC inquiry report praised the introduction of landfill tax, which has encouraged local authorities in England and Wales to seek alternative solutions to waste disposal rather than relying on landfill sites.
However, members of the committe criticised the Treasury for a lack of co-operation between itself and the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra).
The report suggests that the Treasury and Defra need to work together for the improvement of the nation’s recycling rate, which appears to be stagnating at 42%, despite the EU demanding a 50% recycling rate from all member nations by 2020.
The EAC has mirrored calls from the waste and recycling industry, which has asked for support from the Treasury.
The waste sector claims the introduction of landfill tax has created its own set of issues, including the exporting of waste to other countries, which they use to “create jobs, investment and their own energy, when we could do that ourselves”, according to one waste management boss.
Addressing the issue, the committee commented: “This raised questions about the extent to which the Treasury was concerned with supporting wider environmental goals and targets outside of the tax.”
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