Budget-Building a low carbon economy - Waste management measures to help hit carbon budget
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Issued 22 APRIL 2009
The Secretary of State for Environment Hilary Benn today welcomed the
measures in the 2009 Budget which encourage investment in low carbon
jobs and energy generation using organic waste.
The Chancellor announced additional funding of £10 million for
anaerobic digestion and waste infrastructure and a continued increase
of £8 per tonne per year to the standard rate of landfill tax up to
2013. These measures will encourage investment in sustainable waste
management and will enable over 850,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide
equivalent savings to be made each year, which will help towards
achieving the Government's carbon budget.
Following the Budget statement Hilary Benn said:
"The Government is committed to reducing the amount of waste sent to
landfill and finding alternative sources of energy. The £10 million for
food waste reprocessing will play a vital role in providing alternative
energy, diverting a further 300,000 tonnes of food waste from landfill
and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
"In the UK we produce over 100 million tonnes of organic material every
year that, through anaerobic digestion, could be used to create enough
energy to heat and power over two million homes.
"And it's not only the environment that will benefit. Increasing our
anaerobic digestion capability will also stimulate a greener economy by
creating skilled jobs in construction, collection and reprocessing of
Anaerobic digestion is the process of breaking down organic material
such as food waste and farm manures and slurries to create heat and
power and transport fuel.
In February Defra announced the UK's goal to become a world leader in
this innovative technology. Businesses ranging from the energy sector,
water, retail and agriculture support this goal and a task group is
working on a programme to implement the plans of Government and
industry. The £10 million funding package announced in the budget today
is in addition to the £10 million already earmarked in 2008 to build
demonstration plants. From April 1 2009 Government has doubled the
level of support for anaerobic digestion through the Renewable
An increase in the UK's anaerobic digestion capability will also help
to deliver landfill targets. This was bolstered in the Budget that will
continue the increase in Landfill Tax in increments of eight pounds a
year up to 2013.
Mr Benn continued:
"The Landfill Tax has really helped to reduce the amount of waste sent
to landfill and encouraging businesses and local authorities to move
towards a more sustainable approach to handling waste. In the last year
alone efforts by local authorities have reduced their landfill from 18
million tonnes in 2006 to 15 tonnes in 2008, and by encouraging greater
recycling, carbon emissions have fallen by 11 million tonnes- the same
as taking 3.6 million cars off the road overnight."
1. 'Anaerobic Digestion - Shared Goals' sets shared national ambitions
for anaerobic digestion, both nationally and within individual sectors.
The document and the list of organisations which have endorsed it so
far are available at:
2. Anaerobic digestion breaks down organic matter, such as animal
manure and food waste, to produce biogas which can be used as a
renewable energy source for heat and power, and as a transport fuel. It
produces a nutrient-rich digestate which can be used as fertiliser, and
importantly it keeps organic waste out of landfill, which cuts
greenhouse gas emissions.
3. Electricity from anaerobic digestion is eligible for support in the
form of ROCs (Renewable Obligation Certificates). On 1 April 2009, the
Government introduced differentiated support levels for different
renewables technologies (known as "banding"). Anaerobic digestion is
among the technologies that receive additional support in the form of
multiple ROCs. Anaerobic digestion now receives 2 ROCs/MWh (Renewable
Obligation Certificates per Megawatt hour).
4. In-Vessel Composting (IVC) is a process that breaks down organic
matter to produce a compost while contained in a closed environment.
Food Waste is subject to the Animal By-Products Regulations that
require composting to take place in closed containers or buildings with
no access by vermin, and meet stringent requirements for temperature
and pasteurisation to kill disease causing organisms. All food waste
must be processed by IVC or AD facilities.
5. Landfill targets set by the European Union are:
* By 2010 to reduce the amount of Biodegradable Municipal Waste (BMW)
going to landfill to 75% of that produced in 1995.
* By 2013 to reduce the amount of BMW going to landfill to 50% of that
produced in 1995.
* By 2020 to reduce the amount of BMW going to landfill to 35% of that
produced in 1995.
6. The £10 million additional funding for anaerobic digestion projects
is expected to deliver around 178,500 tonnes per year in CO2 savings.
7. Increases in Landfill Tax up to 2013 are expected to deliver around
700,000 tonnes per year in CO2 savings.
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2009-04-23 12:13:26 in Economic Articles