ADBA calls for local authority funding for separate food waste collection

The Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA) has warned that funding for local authorities to implement separate food waste collections by 2023 must be provided without delay, if the UK is to meet its net-zero targets.

In 2017, the UK Government made separate food waste collection mandatory in England by 2023 as part of its Resources and Waste Management Strategy.

There are currently no plans for the Government to financially support local authorities to implement this directive before 2023, by which time it will be too late to meet the deadline, ABDA has warned.

"Local Authorities are in the process of putting their waste management contracts in place now for the years to come, and they need government funding now to be able to implement separate food waste collections by 2023", explained Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of ADBA.

The National Infrastructure Commission has also repeated this recommendation in its latest annual monitoring report.

The report recommends that 'separate food waste collection for households and business for biogas production' is enabled.

ABDA has said that additional funding for local authorities to meet the target for individual waste collection is vital when considering the UK's net zero targets and has cited the upcoming Budget announcement as an ideal time to begin providing the necessary investments.

"In England, 50 per cent of local councils are currently collecting food waste separately or as part of their green waste collection,” Morton added.

“However, still some 2.3Mt of household-produced food waste goes to either landfill or sewer, where it emits harmful methane gas as it breaks down.

“This food waste could generate up to 2.7TWh of energy if it were taken to an AD plant.

“But lack of funding is preventing LAs from putting the infrastructure in place to collect this food waste, and being able to do so, as required by Government, by 2023.

“We cannot afford any delays if the UK is to meet its Net Zero targets by 2050 and hope this funding will feature in this week's Budget announcement."