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Report Spells Out the Rapidly Rising Cost of London’s Waste Disposal

It will cost £5 billion to dispose of London’s waste between now and 2020, according to a report prepared by consultant Mouchel Parkman. The report Waste modelling for London was prepared jointly with Cranfield University.

Landfill tax increases and the implementation of much higher rates of recycling and waste processing all comes at a cost which has been rising at an annual rate of 50% year on year since 2004, according to the report, as reported in the New Civil Engineer, the UK Institution of Civil Engineer’s members magazine.

This excludes the cost of any fines which some think may also be incurred, as the rate of progress toward acheiving EU Waste Diversion charges appears to be slower than anticipated.

The authors find that the cheapest way to comply with the waste targets will be to utilise MBT (Mechanical Biological Treatment). The Waster finds it surprising that they concluded that this would be cheaper than incineration, but only marginally, and wonders whether realistic costs were allowed for in the event that the organic compost product cannot be sold or used due to low quality, and therefore still ends up in landfill after all – as seems likely unless the compost material and any RDF produced can be reclassified as a product, and not remain “waste”.

The Mayor prefers higher recycling rates and a range of technologies. Surely, adoption of a range of technologies will be inevitable, and the Mayor has it right on that one.

Biffa Waste Management’s Peter Jones is quoted as having said that 300 facilities will be needed to be built over the next 14 years.


One Response to Report Spells Out the Rapidly Rising Cost of London’s Waste Disposal

  1. waster 8 July 2006 at 7:37 pm #


    The following letter was published in the Shropshire Star, on Friday 7 July, 2006

    “Recycling could just be a scam

    Japan’s (is) recycling rubbish – and no householder pays for it. Private companies are asked to tender for its collection. The companies then make a profit from recycling
    glass, plastics and paper. Our councils don’t do that – they still seem to charge us for the service!

    I wonder where all the gardening programmes obtain the ground glass chips and ground up glass of all colours they use for their garden designs.

    The programme “It’s Not Easy Being Green” made a greenhouse in which they constructed a box in the floor and filled it with ground-up glass to retain the heat and then disgorge it through the greenhouse overnight.

    I just wonder if it isn’t another government scam to get people off the unemployment register as there seems to be so many more operatives than previously.

    I found it a great problem at Christmas knowing how many Christmas presents to attach to the dustbin!

    J Wendy Slark

    Maybe the waste industry needs to publicise the costs, and the difficulties experienced in selling mush more than the broken glass.

    How mush money does she really think can be made from crushed glass sold for gardens!

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