Council to sell landfill permits

RIGHTS to dump waste in landfill sites will be sold by North Somerset Council, raising money in the process.

The authority has increased its recycling rates three-fold in the past six years, meaning it no longer needs about 10,000 excess landfill permits it received from the Government.

The permits allow the council to dump a ton of recyclable waste in landfill for each one they possess.

But every year, the Government hands out fewer permits and fines authorities �150 for each ton sent to landfill without a permit to encourage councils to recycle more.

North Somerset Council is now selling 7,000 of its leftover Landfill Allowance Trading Scheme (LATS) permits at �2 each, raising �14,000.

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The council is the second highest unitary authority in the country for recycling levels, with 60 per cent of households now recycling – a three-fold increase on 2006. It has saved �8million in landfill tax over the past six years as the amount of recyclable waste sent to tips has plummeted by 70 per cent.

Recent improvements to recycling services have included a garden waste collection service and the Recycling Revolution initiative, which saw the authority introduce a weekly kerbside collection of food waste.

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A spokesman said: “This report highlights the significant work the council and residents have been doing over the past few years to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill.

“This has ensured that we have not had to face fines under the LATS scheme. Despite the great work everyone’s doing, the message is clear - we need to keep recycling.”

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