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Zero waste to landfill

Questions to the Mayor of London – answered on 13th March 2020.

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Photo of Caroline Russell Caroline Russell Green

In December 2018 you published Zero Carbon London: A 1.5C compatible plan, which identified sending zero waste to landfill by 2026 as a London-wide target. What progress have you made towards this?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

London’s local authority collected waste (LACW) being sent to landfill has fallen from 751,000 tonnes in 2015/16 to 251,000 tonnes (7 per cent of total waste produced) in 2018/19.  I expect this trend to continue as more boroughs meet my minimum recycling service level and grow their business waste recycling offering.

My target is for London to achieve zero biodegradable or recyclable municipal waste (local authority waste and privately collected businesses waste) to landfill by 2026. London sends around 1 million tonnes (16 per cent) of total municipal waste to landfill annually. This is based on surveys and best available national data as there is no requirement for business to report their waste performance.

In order to achieve my zero waste to landfill target the government in its Resources and Waste Strategy has responded to my call to put in place a range of measures by 2023, including a minimum recycling service provided to all households and businesses,  tighter reporting requirements on business waste, and a robust national waste data reporting framework.