Defra releases ‘Digest of Waste’

Defra releases 'Digest of Waste'

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) has released its first ‘Digest of Waste and Resource Statistics’ collating official UK waste statistics for ‘ease of use’.

The ‘Digest of Waste and Resource Statistics – 2015 Edition’ pulls together the latest official UK waste statistics from sources including Defra, the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP), the Environment Agency (EA), the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and Eurostat.

Aimed at ‘policymakers, analysts and specialists in the Defra Network, Environment Agency, WRAP, other organisations, the waste sector, academia, other researchers and consultancies’, the first UK digest pulls together ‘a wide range of key statistics on waste and resource’ into one publication for ‘ease of use’. It aims to help overcome the ‘challenge’ of ‘readily’ finding relevant data, and includes a glossary for common terminology and acronyms used in the waste industry.

Although the digest does not include any new data (nor will it replace the regular updates published by government and external bodies), it includes the most recent official statistics for a range of areas, including:

  • resource flows and use;
  • waste arisings by sector (i.e. construction and demolition, commerce, industry, household);
  • composition of waste;
  • growth in the economy and efficiency of resource use;
  • gross value added (GVA) of the waste management and repair/reuse sectors;
  • energy-from-waste infrastructure;
  • refuse-derived fuel exports;
  • landfill emissions;
  • food waste; and
  • a comparison of UK waste arisings and packaging recycling compared to the rest of the EU.

The various sets of data are not all for the same time periods, but the most recent available data has been used. However, in many cases (such as for the economic value of the waste and resources sector), this data may be three of four years old.

The Scottish Government, through the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), has produced its own waste digest since 2001 (covering data from 1997/98).

Read the full ‘Digest of Waste and Resource Statistics – 2015 Edition’ .

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